Student Protests: Dozens Walkout Of VCU Commencement

Student Protests: Dozens Walkout Of VCU Commencement


Pro-Palestinian protests on college campuses carried on Saturday across the U.S., in some cases during graduation ceremonies.

WASHINGTON, DC – SEPTEMBER 26: Virginia Governor Glen Youngkin addresses the Economic Club of … [+] Washington’s luncheon event at the Marriott Marquis on September 26, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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The University of California, Berkeley’s commencement ceremony was interrupted by protests as hundreds of students chanted throughout the event, according to local media reports, and security was reportedly working to remove the protesters.

Earlier, dozens of protestors at Virginia Commonwealth University walked out of their graduation event as Gov. Glen Youngkin was set to begin his commencement address—a protest anticipated as students opposed his views on LGBTQ+ rights, his opposition to a proposed “racial literacy” requirement and his support for police efforts to breakup pro-Palestnian protests on Virginia campuses.

In response to a request to comment, Youngkin’s office pointed Forbes to Youngkin’s speech, which went on uninterrupted, and a post on X congratulating the graduating class.

At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, protesters marched and reportedly defaced a campus building with red paint hours ahead of tonight’s commencement, as the National Students for Justice in Palestine noted students had set up an encampment on campus near “where many graduates will want to take their graduation photos” in a protest billed as “the people’s graduation.”

Several other college campuses were planning graduations Saturday, with several announcing increased security measures, including the University of Texas at Austin.

Some schools, like the University of Wisconsin, made agreements with protesters to end encampments and prevent commencement disruptions—Pomona College in California changed the venue for its Sunday graduation after protesters occupied the commencement stage on campus.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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