UCSD’s Black Graduating Class of 2022!

University of California San Diego’s Black Resource Center hosted their annual Black graduation ceremony for the Class of 2022 UCSD Graduates on Friday, June 10th.


By Ahliyah S. Chambers, Contributing Writer

University of California San Diego’s Black Resource Center hosted their annual Black graduation ceremony for the Class of 2022 UCSD Graduates on Friday, June 10th. 

From 6 to 8 p.m., family, friends, and students gathered in the Rimac Arena on campus to celebrate the resiliency and achievement of this year’s graduating class. There were six Doctorate degrees, 13 Masters degrees, and 75 Bachelor’s degrees awarded to Black students on Friday evening as their loved ones cheered them on.

Each year, graduating Black students voted on an Adinkra symbol that best portrays their graduating class. The Class of 2022 voted on Nyansapo, or the “wisdom knot,” as the symbol conveys the idea that a wise person has the capacity to choose the best means to attain a goal. 

From experiencing college during a global pandemic to continuously seeing racial violence in the media, it is no secret that UCSD’s Black students have persevered in order to walk across the stage. The students chose this symbol to depict the wisdom gained from rising to the occasion and accomplishing much despite facing adversities. 

Robyn Bolden and Daril Brown were the student speakers selected to address their graduating class. Bolden is a mother of four and a non-traditional student who is also a first generation college graduate and a former foster care youth. Bolden earned her Bachelors in Communication with a minor in Africana Studies. 

On the other hand, Daril Brown is an electrical and computer engineering student earning his Ph.D. They each shared comments about their journey at this prestigious university and how it was difficult to navigate at times as a Black student. They thanked their mentors, advisors, student organizations, and most importantly, the UCSD Black Resource Center for ensuring that they had a support system to celebrate their achievements and lessons learned along the way. 

The Alumni Keynote Speaker for the evening was Dr. David Inwards-Breland, who is Division Chief of the Adolescent Medicine Division at Rady’s Children’s Hospital, Co-Director of the Center for Gender Affirming Care, and clinical professor of Pediatrics at UCSD School of Medicine. Dr. Inwards-Breland encouraged students to always remain authentic to themselves while advocating for change in underserved communities.

Kendrick Lamar’s “We Gon’ Be Alright,”, played as students crossed the stage, as it has become a staple song that speaks to perseverance for the UCSD Black community. After the students walked, posed and cheered for one another, Chair of the Black Alumni Council, Fnann Keflezighi welcomed the graduates to alumnihood. Keflezighi embraced students while letting them know that life with UCSD does not end here and the UCSD Black Alumni Council would be there to support their post-graduation journey. 

Kyler Nathan IV, an alumni of UCSD, current MBA graduate student, and staff member at the Black Resource Center said, “Although it takes much preparation to host the Black graduation, it is always rewarding to see Black students walk across that stage with the entire community and the Black Resource Center behind them. It is not easy being a Black student at UCSD, so they definitely deserve to bask in the moment and celebrate this milestone!”

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