Due to the coronavirus pandemic, senior festivities were canceled this Spring, but graduation was in many ways more special than we could have ever imagined. Some of the most inspirational celebrities and social advocates joined forces to wish graduating seniors the very best in the coming years. One of those celebrities was none other than Selena Gomez.
The singer/actress and producer spoke to students from immigrant families. The graduation event was part of #Immigrad 2020 Virtual Commencement hosted by Define American, FWD.us, United We Dream, I Am An Immigrant and Golden Door Scholars.
“I know that this is a virtual ceremony, but it is very real. And it’s very real to all the families and all of you and your communities. I want you guys to know that you matter. And that your experiences are a huge part of the American story,” Gomez said.
“When my family came here from Mexico they set into motion my American story, as well as theirs. I’m a proud third-generation American-Mexican, and my family’s journey and their sacrifices helped me get me to where I am today,” Gomez said. “Mine is not a unique story. Each and every one of you has a similar tale of becoming an American.”
Gomez added, “Regardless of where your family is from, regardless of your immigration status, you have taken action to earn an education, to make your families proud, and to open up your worlds. I’m sending all of my love to you guys today and congratulations, and I hope that you guys are set off to be everything that you want to be.”
Gomez also partook in #Graduation2020: Facebook and Instagram Celebrate the Class of 2020 live stream — another graduation event a couple of weeks ago.
Here’s some of that speech:
“When people ask me what I would tell my younger self, I always said, ‘Go ahead and do it.’ You all have worked incredibly hard to get to this point and I know it’s not exactly how you imagined your graduation to look like,” Gomez said in a video filmed from her home. “I want to say it’s okay not to know what to do with the rest of your life. It’s a journey to find your direction or your passions, so don’t get frustrated by the mistakes and setbacks as they happen to all of us.”
“The amazing Oprah, like she said, you don’t become what you want not, you become what you believe. I think that really resonates as if you don’t believe in yourself, don’t expect others to believe in your abilities,” Gomez said. “Hopefully, you know, when large gatherings are allowed, everybody can get together and celebrate your important achievement. But until then stay safe, stay connected with your friends and loved ones, and congratulations for this milestone,” she said.