ORANGEBURG, S.C. (WBTW) — U.S. President Joe Biden will be in South Carolina on Dec. 17 to address graduating seniors at South Carolina State University, the school announced on Saturday.
Biden, the 46th U.S. president, will speak to the 2021 graduating class at 10 a.m. at the school’s Smith Hammond Middleton Memorial Center.
“The South Carolina State University family is honored and grateful to host President Biden when he addresses our graduates as they set a course for their futures,” Interim South Carolina State President Alexander Conyers said. “Our students will no doubt remember his words for the rest of their lives. This is indeed a privilege for all here at SC State.
“We extend our heartfelt thanks to President Biden and Congressman James E. Clyburn for making this special occasion an unforgettable moment in the university’s history,” Conyers said.
Clyburn, a South Carolina Democrat who has been the House Majority Whip since 2019, had been scheduled to be the keynote speaker, but he invited President Biden to deliver the commencement address in his stead, as Clyburn will be receiving his own degree during the ceremony.
“I am pleased to welcome President Biden back to my alma mater,” Clyburn said. “The last time he was on this campus, he came to win the hearts and minds of this community. This week he will return to share with the newest graduates of South Carolina State what he is doing for them, for their families, and their community to ensure that they have access to America’s greatness.
“It will be a tremendous honor to share the stage with President Biden at this institution that means so much to me as I mark 60 years since I earned the degree that set me on the path to where I am today.”
Clyburn earned a degree from SC State in 1961, but he did not march with his class because the school did not conduct December ceremonies at the time. He plans to march with the class of 2021.