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Janelle Monáe Encouraged Students At Dillard University To “Choose Freedom Over Fear”

The Hidden Figures star received an honorary diploma at the liberal arts college on May 13.

May 16, 2017

A post shared by Janelle Monáe (@janellemonae) on


Janelle Monáe received an honorary degree from Dillard University over the weekend and took the opportunity to inspire students with a commencement speech. The liberal arts college in New Orleans gave her a framed honorary diploma on May 13, which she later posted with on Instagram.

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Monáe also spoke at the school's commencement ceremony, encouraging students to “choose freedom over fear" while sharing stories from her career and recent role as NASA physicist Mary Jackson in Hidden Figures. She shared her three secrets to a happy life during the speech: "No. 1, the importance of being gracious. No. 2, the importance of being proud. No. 3, the importance of choosing freedom over fear."

Watch footage of the speech below.


Janelle Monáe Encouraged Students At Dillard University To “Choose Freedom Over Fear”