Introducing Dr. Stormzy: Everything that went down with Stormzy at Exeter graduation
He was given an honorary degree for his outstanding contribution to society
Stormzy – or as we should now call him Dr. Michael – was on campus yesterday, receiving an honorary degree from Exeter University for his outstanding contribution to society.
He also addressed the graduates, praising them for having proved they have “what it takes to follow their dreams” and hoping that this was only start of their fruitful lives and careers.
As well as being an accomplished musician, Stormzy is also a social justice campaigner. His #Merky Foundation, which he has pledged £10 million over 10 years to, supports organisations and movements committed to fighting racial inequality, justice reform and black empowerment within the UK.
In his speech at Exeter’s graduation, Stormzy touched on how his journey to his graduation had been “considerably different” to the rest of those gathered to celebrate the end of their degrees.
“It took a hell of a lot for you to get here today. Your journeys to get to this moment were hard fought. The road you took was not easy. And this is coming from someone who tried to walk that exact same road and failed”, Stormzy said.
Stormzy also applauded Exeter graduates’ “grit, gut and determination”, celebrating everyone’s hard work which had led to that moment.
“I pray these words give you a bit of encouragement to be who you’re destined to be”, he said.
He also said it was his mum’s “biggest dream” to see him graduate, and acknowledging the support of his family, who were in attendance. He described his graduation as a “full circle moment”, saying: “I feel extremely blessed and grateful to be up here receiving this honorary degree”.
His speech ended with “Dr. Mike, over and out”, a moment which he said he’d “imagined for a long time”.
Professor Lisa Roberts, University of Exeter Vice Chancellor, said: “We are proud to honour Michael for his remarkable contribution to society and extraordinary talent. He is an outstanding musician and wordsmith, and he inspires people to speak openly about their beliefs and fight for their rights.
“The University of Exeter has put social justice at the heart of its new ten-year strategy which includes opening doors to people from all walks of life into higher education and it was wonderful to hear Michael’s powerful speech today to students and graduates.”
If you want to hear Stormzy’s full speech, you can watch it here:
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Featured image via SWNS