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With all the bleak news revolving around Black people in America, it’s always a wonderful thing when we can report feel-good news for the culture. And a Black woman who gave birth to a Black life the night before she graduated from a historically Black college—well, that’s just the kind of news we need right now. But it gets even better.

Graduation Cap

Source: Catherine McQueen / Getty

According to WDSU, Jada Sayles thought that because she went into labor the night before she was set to walk across the stage at Dillard University, an HBCU in New Orleans, Louisiana, she would be missing her Saturday morning commencement ceremony.

“I thought I was gonna walk across the stage to get my degree, instead I got my baby,” Sayles posted on Twitter. “My sweet face decided to make his way on my big day (now his).”

But what Sayles didn’t know is that Dillard President Dr. Walter Kimbrough received a text about her missing her big day at the university to give birth and he and his wife decided to pay a visit to the hospital to make sure she was able to participate in a commencement ceremony after all.

“I even did the tassel part of commencement! This really was a very sweet moment. I’ll never forget it,” Kimbrough tweeted. “To me, this is what HBCUs are all about!”

He also said this was something he’d never done before in his 18 years of being a college president.


Sayles’ family members—including her newly born son, of course—were in attendance at the hospital. According to WDSU, she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice with an emphasis on pre-law.

Congratulations, Jada Sayles, on your degree and on your new addition to your family! This is just beyond beautiful.



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