Howard University shuts down graduation mid-way through ceremony after relatives cause chaos and smash window

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By stefan armitage

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A graduation ceremony for nursing students at Howard University took a chaotic turn when angry family members were locked out after the auditorium reached capacity. However, social media users are placing the blame on the school.

As a result of being denied entry to the celebratory event, individuals locked outside began chanting and banging on doors, the New York Post reports. 

Videos and images captured the tumultuous scene outside the Cramton Auditorium on Thursday, with individuals demanding to be let in as the ceremony commenced. The commotion escalated, resulting in a shattered glass door and attempts to push past security.

Dr. Gina S. Brown, the dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences, informed attendees that the fire department was shutting down the event due to room capacity and concerns over behavior. 


"The fire department is now here to shut us down," Dr. Brown said, adding: "Because of the size of the room and because our relatives sometimes do not know how to act."

However, D.C. Fire and EMS later denied involvement in the shutdown, stating that they responded to a medical local at the request of campus police.


Howard University clarified that security removed someone from the building before the ceremony, which led to a disturbance. They stated, per FOX 5 DC: "During the ceremony, a visitor who was not able to enter the facility, which had reached capacity, leaned on the front door, unintentionally applying pressure to a pane causing it to break.

"This incident led to a disturbance among guests and a disruption of the program taking place inside. Guests in attendance were immediately dispersed following this incident."

It was later reported that security personnel removed somebody from the building after a student sustained cuts from broken glass.

The ceremony abruptly ended during the keynote address.

Disappointed graduates later spoke to NBC Washington about missing out on their big moment, with graduate Kiana Hamilton saying: "I’m confused why it got so crazy, how it got so quick, so bad so fast.”

Credit: Drew Angerer / Getty

Fellow graduate Halle Ragoonanan lamented, "I didn’t even get to walk. I graduated magna cum laude and I didn’t even get to walk."

"All the money we spent," mentioned an unnamed student. "My father and grandmother came down from North Carolina."


The university website stated that tickets were not required for attendees, but stressed that the space could only "accommodate an estimated 3-4 attendees per graduate."

Guests were also seated on a "first-come basis."

Social media users have since blasted the university for poor planning.

Officials from Howard University later confirmed that affected students were able to walk in the university’s main commencement ceremony on Saturday, while individual awards were given out to students on Friday.

Featured image credit: Drew Angerer / Getty

Howard University shuts down graduation mid-way through ceremony after relatives cause chaos and smash window

vt-author-image

By stefan armitage

Article saved!Article saved!

A graduation ceremony for nursing students at Howard University took a chaotic turn when angry family members were locked out after the auditorium reached capacity. However, social media users are placing the blame on the school.

As a result of being denied entry to the celebratory event, individuals locked outside began chanting and banging on doors, the New York Post reports. 

Videos and images captured the tumultuous scene outside the Cramton Auditorium on Thursday, with individuals demanding to be let in as the ceremony commenced. The commotion escalated, resulting in a shattered glass door and attempts to push past security.

Dr. Gina S. Brown, the dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences, informed attendees that the fire department was shutting down the event due to room capacity and concerns over behavior. 


"The fire department is now here to shut us down," Dr. Brown said, adding: "Because of the size of the room and because our relatives sometimes do not know how to act."

However, D.C. Fire and EMS later denied involvement in the shutdown, stating that they responded to a medical local at the request of campus police.


Howard University clarified that security removed someone from the building before the ceremony, which led to a disturbance. They stated, per FOX 5 DC: "During the ceremony, a visitor who was not able to enter the facility, which had reached capacity, leaned on the front door, unintentionally applying pressure to a pane causing it to break.

"This incident led to a disturbance among guests and a disruption of the program taking place inside. Guests in attendance were immediately dispersed following this incident."

It was later reported that security personnel removed somebody from the building after a student sustained cuts from broken glass.

The ceremony abruptly ended during the keynote address.

Disappointed graduates later spoke to NBC Washington about missing out on their big moment, with graduate Kiana Hamilton saying: "I’m confused why it got so crazy, how it got so quick, so bad so fast.”

Credit: Drew Angerer / Getty

Fellow graduate Halle Ragoonanan lamented, "I didn’t even get to walk. I graduated magna cum laude and I didn’t even get to walk."

"All the money we spent," mentioned an unnamed student. "My father and grandmother came down from North Carolina."


The university website stated that tickets were not required for attendees, but stressed that the space could only "accommodate an estimated 3-4 attendees per graduate."

Guests were also seated on a "first-come basis."

Social media users have since blasted the university for poor planning.

Officials from Howard University later confirmed that affected students were able to walk in the university’s main commencement ceremony on Saturday, while individual awards were given out to students on Friday.

Featured image credit: Drew Angerer / Getty