Former President Barack Obama will address graduating high school students across the country in a televised ceremony to honor their disrupted graduation.
Obama will join a number of high-profile celebrities to deliver his commencement address for the class of 2020, which consists of about three million American seniors.
The LeBron James Family Foundation, XQ Institute, and The Entertainment Industry Foundation are hosting the event, which will take place at 8 p.m. EST on Saturday, May 16.
The one-hour special will air on NBC, ABC, CBS, and FOX next Saturday and will replace graduation ceremonies in high schools across the country, which have been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The special ceremony will also take place on digital platforms, including Facebook, Tiktok, and YouTube.
"Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020" will feature an appearance from Obama in addition to popstars like Pharell Williams, Megan Rapinoe, and the Jonas Brothers.
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Obama said that commencement ceremonies were a culmination of years of hard work for high school students and that it was important that this year's graduating class were able to enjoy their own ceremony.
"I’ve always loved joining commencements––the culmination of years of hard work and sacrifice," Obama said on his personal Instagram account. "Michelle and I are excited to celebrate the nationwide Class of 2020 and recognize this milestone with you and your loved ones."
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I’ve always loved joining commencements––the culmination of years of hard work and sacrifice. Even if we can’t get together in person this year, Michelle and I are excited to celebrate the nationwide Class of 2020 and recognize this milestone with you and your loved ones.
The former president will be joined by several high school seniors from Chicago schools in addition to members of the Obama Youth Jobs Corps, which increases access to economic opportunity for high school students in disadvantaged areas.
Obama will also deliver a virtual commencement speech for graduating high school and college seniors in June. Obama will join the likes of Alicia Keys and Lady Gaga for YouTube's "Dear Class of 2020" event on June 6.
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