Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos faced an unreceptive crowd when she gave her keynote address at Bethune-Cookman University. Students booed, heckled, and turned their backs on President Donald Trump's appointee.
DeVos's selection to speak at the commencement event was controversial. Bethune-Cookman is a historically black university, and DeVos faced criticism in February for calling the institutions "real pioneers" of school choice. She is also a prominent advocate for charter schools, a government-funded system of education with fewer regulations. The NAACP and Movement for Black Lives have called for a moratorium on charter schools, claiming that they have "exacerbated segregation."
President Trump added further strain last week when he suggested that HBCUs are unconstitutional, which he later walked back.
According to The Washington Post, students at Bethune-Cookman delivered a petition with thousands of signatures demanding the university drop her as a scheduled speaker. University president President Edison Jackson refused, and called the Secretary "passionate about education" during a radio interview on Tuesday.
Buzzfeed reporter Molly Hensley-Clancy livetweeted Wednesday's event, which also included The Apprentice star and Trump's director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison Omarosa Manigault. She was also booed. Read the coverage, including other videos from the speech, below.