Some students brought yellow umbrellas to the commencement ceremonies in support of the Hong Kong demonstrations that have been going on since September; these demonstrations have become know as the Umbrella Revolution. They then walked up to receive their diplomas with their opened umbrellas.
The university’s president, Chen Xinzi, refused to issue diplomas to the students who carried umbrellas.
He told the students to have some “self respect.”
On Nov. 16, the Hong Kong Baptist University student association issued an open letter to president Chen. In the letter, they stated: “We were shocked to hear and see president Chen’s words and actions during commencement ceremonies. We are writing this letter to show our strong dissatisfaction with his stance. We will take umbrellas to the graduation ceremony again tomorrow. It is really an improper attitude for the university president. Neither the president nor school authorities have the right to interfere with students bringing umbrellas to the graduation ceremony.”
For more information on the Umbrella Revolution, see:
- Hong Kong Students Say: ‘Vive La Umbrella Revolution!’
- Umbrella Dreams: Mini-Documentary on Student Protesters in Hong Kong
- The Umbrellistas’ Miracle Song: When You Believe (Video)
- Can You Feel the Silent Power Behind These 10 Pics of Occupy Central (Photos)
- In Pictures: How Hong Kong Looks Now, 5 Weeks Since Occupy Central Began
- Hong Kong Students Would Rather Be Arrested Than Surrender