Howard U. cancels graduation mid-ceremony after furious family members pound on doors, smash window

A graduation ceremony for nursing college students at Howard University ended abruptly and in chaos after indignant family members chanted “Let us in!” and pounded on the doorways and smashed a window after being locked out when the auditorium hit capability.

Loved ones of scholars within the College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences packed into the Cramton Auditorium in Washington, DC, on Thursday, however not all family members made it contained in the constructing earlier than the ceremony was abruptly canceled throughout the keynote deal with.

Chaotic video footage exhibits dozens of individuals standing outdoors the auditorium chanting “Let us in! Let us in!” because the ceremony started. Pictures confirmed a glass door had been shattered throughout the commotion as individuals banged on the doorways and tried to push previous safety to go inside.

“While they were doing the keynote speaker, there was, like, loud banging, even before that, for like 10 minutes straight,” graduate Bria Flowers told NBC Washington. “Just like boom, boom, boom, boom, boom.”

Video confirmed individuals standing outdoors the auditorium banging on the glass home windows and doorways to be let in for the ceremony. Facebook

School officers instructed college students and their households mid-ceremony that the fireplace division had come to close issues down.

“Because of the size of the room and because our relatives sometimes do not know how to act, the fire department is now here to shut us down,” Dr. Gina S. Brown, dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences, stated to a roaring response of boos.

However, D.C. Fire and EMS denied shutting down the graduation.

“D.C. Fire and EMS did not shut down tonight’s event,” the division stated. “At 6:42 p.m., we responded to the Cramton Auditorium for a medical local at the request of campus police. The patient was evaluated and refused transport, and D.C. Fire and EMS departed.”

The ceremony for nursing graduates abruptly ended on Thursday throughout the keynote speaker’s deal with. NBC

Students and their households had been left shocked and upset by how shortly issues received out of hand.

“I’m confused why it got so crazy, how it got so quick, so bad so fast,” graduate Kiana Hamilton stated.

Fellow graduate Halle Ragoonanan stated the incident was particularly heartbreaking for her and her family as a result of she didn’t get to stroll throughout her highschool graduation in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“I didn’t even get to walk,” she stated. “I didn’t get to walk. I graduated magna cum laude and I didn’t even get to walk. I’m the class of 2020. I didn’t get to walk for my high school graduation and I didn’t get to walk for my college graduation.”

Some of the graduates had been capable of stroll in Saturday’s ceremony. NBC

Other graduates lamented over how a lot cash their households had spent to be there for his or her special occasion only for it to be canceled.

“All the money we spent,” an unnamed pupil instructed the station. “My father and grandmother came down from North Carolina.”

Howard stated safety eliminated somebody from the constructing earlier than the ceremony who returned and smashed the glass door outdoors the auditorium.

One pupil was discovered with cuts on their arms from the damaged glass.

“This incident led to a disturbance among guests outside of the facility, resulting in a disruption of the program,” Howard’s assertion stated. “Guests in attendance were immediately dispersed following this incident.”

Some of the affected college students had been capable of stroll within the college’s primary graduation ceremony on Saturday, whereas particular person awards got out to college students on Friday.

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