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Friday, May 20, 2022

HBCU Student Gives Birth on Graduation Day, Receives Degree in Hospital

Jada Sayles

Nationwide — Jada Sayles, a student from New Orleans, Louisiana, received her degree from Dillard University with a surprise graduation ceremony inside her hospital room just hours after giving birth to her baby boy.

Sayles had been looking forward to the day she graduates from Dillard University, an HBCU. When the day came, she went into labor and was admitted to the hospital hours before the graduation ceremony.

That day, Sayles welcomed her newborn son.

“I thought I was gonna walk across the stage to get my degree, instead I got my baby,” she wrote on Twitter, with pictures of her and her baby. “My sweet face decided to make his way on MY big day (now his).”

Upon finding out that Sayles wasn’t able to attend her ceremony, the school stepped up to surprise her with a graduation ceremony.

“Jada went into labor on Friday evening. Texted me around 4:30 am Saturday saying she was being admitted, & the baby was born on her graduation day,” Dillard University President Walter M. Kimbrough wrote on Twitter. “So we rolled up to the hospital so I could finish my tenure in the most special way.”

In a video shared along with Kimbrough’s post, Sayles can be seen wearing her graduation cap and gown while receiving her degree at the hospital. Her family members can be heard cheering her on in the background.

“Shoutout to my university for still bringing my graduation and degree to me. Ima college graduate & mommy, talk to me nice!” Sayles added.

Sayles earned a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and Corrections.