The Wakandan King himself, Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman continues to reign. Washington D.C.’s Howard University recently invited Boseman back to his alma mater to deliver the keynote at its 150th commencement ceremony on May 12th. News station WJLA reports on that date he will also receive an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters –the school’s highest accolade.
In an official statement, Howard University President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick praised the 41-year-old South Carolina native for reminding us of African-American excellence, specifically through his role as Black Panther/King T’Challa:
“It is an incredible honor and privilege for the Howard University community to welcome back home one of its native sons, Chadwick Boseman, to deliver the 2018 commencement address.”
“He has played some of the most iconic African Americans that have transformed history, including Jackie Robinson, James Brown and Howard’s own Thurgood Marshall. His recent role in the blockbuster film “Black Panther” reminds us of the excellence found in the African diaspora and how Howard continues to be a gem that produces the next generation of artist-scholars, humanitarians, scientists, engineers and doctors. Mr. Boseman exemplifies the monumental heights and levels Howard graduates can achieve by using the skills and knowledge they acquired at the university.”
Boseman shared that he was excited to return and celebrate the accomplishments of this year’s graduating class:
“I’m excited to return to the Mecca in celebration of the achievements of our illustrious students. Let’s listen, learn and build with one another.”
Boseman graduated from Howard University in 2000 with a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts. While showing his Bison pride in the 90’s during his time of study, he received an opportunity to participate in a prestigious summer theater program The University of Oxford with some fellow students but couldn’t afford to go. One of the students acting teachers, actress Phylicia Rashad eventually was able to get some celebrity friends to foot the bill for the students’ attendance. It was only after he completed the program that Boseman discovered the celebrity friends were none other than Denzel Washington.