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Man from Fayetteville delivers viral Harvard graduation speech

Posted June 3, 2016

— A graduation address, given by a man from Fayetteville at his Harvard Graduate School of Education Convocation ceremony, has grabbed the nation's attention.

Donovan Livingston graduated from Jack Britt High School in 2005. Since then, he has received two master's degrees in education - one from Columbia University and one from Harvard University.

For nearly six minutes last week, Livingston used his gift of spoken word to encourage his fellow Harvard graduates to get the best out of every student they teach.

At one part of his address, he mentioned a teacher he had in the seventh grade - Susan Parker.

Parker said she remembers Livingston and encouraged him to get into forensics and debate at 71st Classical Middle School.

"It's been 15 years or so since I had him, and to be recognized for that, that's the best compliment a teacher can have," she said.

Livingston's parents, who are both retired educators, say they are also extremely proud.

"The vision that he had for the system of education was very impactful, and I was just, I was just blown away," said Harold Livingston.

Donovan Livingston is now moving on to earn his Ph.D. in education.


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