California university holding additional graduate ceremonies for students based on race, sexual orientation

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California’s Chapman University will host separate graduation ceremonies this summer based on students’ skin color, sexual orientation, and disability. 

In addition to the main commencement ceremony for all students, the private university will offer at least six more ceremonies, which are optional.

A post on the university’s Instagram page said the school will hold a Black graduation, an APIDA (Asian Pacific Islander Desi American) graduation, a lavender (LGBT) graduation, a disability graduation, a Middle Eastern graduation, and a Latinx graduation. 

These ceremonies are optional and will be held in late July and early August in addition to a universitywide commencement ceremony for all graduates.    

Jamie S. Ceman, a school spokesperson, told Fox News Monday that media coverage of the school’s Cultural Celebrations is misleading and causing confusion. He said the school has been holding these for nearly 20 years. 

“Our Cultural Graduation Ceremonies … honor the dedication and resilience of students from underrepresented communities,” he said. “While they are intended for any graduate who identifies with a specific community as well as students who identify as allies of these groups, there are no restrictions on student participation nor is it required for any student to participate.” 

The university-wide commencement ceremony and the Cultural Graduation celebration is both for graduates of 2021 and 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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