Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to deliver Washington University commencement address

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar speaks at the NBA Awards on Monday, June 24, 2019, at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — Washington University plans to celebrate commencement with in-person ceremonies next month, in line with public health guidance, and on Thursday the school announced former NBA great and activist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar would be the commencement speaker for the Class of 2021.

Instead of one large, school-wide ceremony, the University plans several smaller events May 20-21 with a maximum of 500 students and two guests per graduate at each event to comply with COVID-19 precautions.

The commencement speech will be pre-recorded so that it can be played at each event.

The school will also welcome back graduates from the class of 2020 who did not get an in-person sendoff because of the pandemic. An announcement on the speaker for those events, slated for May 30, will be announced later this month.

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