Chadwick Boseman, who plays T'challa in the record-breaking film Black Panther, revealed he was kicked off the cast of soap opera long before he played the iconic characters he has come to be known for.
Ending his speech, Boseman told the graduates not only to excel but also to strive to achieve their life's goal no matter what path they take.
He asked the crowd, "What do you do when the principles and standards that were instilled in you here at Howard close the doors in front of you?"
"Take the harder way, the more complicated one, the one with more failures at first than successes", he said.
"A Howard University education is not just about what happens in the classroom".
More than 2,000 students graduated from Howard this year.
"Sometimes you need to feel the real pain and sting of defeat to activate the real passion and objective that God destined inside of you", he told the graduates.
He said that the fact the students have struggled in the university means that they can use their education to improve the world they are going to enter.
"Purpose is the essential element of you", Boseman told the graduates. "It is the reason you are on the planet at this particular time in history". "Howard's legacy is not wrapped up in the money you will make, but the challenges you choose to confront".
"Savor the taste of your triumphs today", Boseman implored graduates on Saturday. "Look down over what you conquered and appreciate what God has brought you through".
Boseman also received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the university.
"When you are deciding on next jobs, next steps, further education...you would rather find objective than a job", said Boseman.
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