SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) -Hundreds of students at Savannah State University walked across the stage Saturday to receive their diplomas.
This was the 197th undergraduate and graduate commencement ceremony. Mayor Van Johnson, who is also a Savannah State alum, was the commencement speaker.
Johnson said students should be proud of their accomplishments and the steps they took to get here.
“Although you sit here and you think today is really about graduation, it’s really not graduation because we call it a commencement because it means that it’s just beginning,” Johnson said. “It means for us that what we’re doing is we’re not really celebrating the destination, we’re celebrating the fact that some of you have made it through a journey; how many of you have made it through a journey?”
Students said getting to this moment seemed bleak, especially as the pandemic grew worse. They say that all their effort was worth it in the end.
“It was a little hard,” Alesha Moore said. “It was a struggle but overall I have great professors, I have great people behind me, my parents supported me throughout my whole entire college education and so I’m just excited to be here.”
“Today meant a lot to me,” Julius Hurst said. “I’ve been here for four years, I had so many hardships, I cried on so many tests that I didn’t think I would pass, I kept doubting myself, but what kept me through was my family and friends.”
Another ceremony will be held on December 12th for spring graduates.
Graduates will only be allowed to have four guests.