DeVos booed speaking at historically black university

WATCH LIVE: Betsy DeVos Delivers Commencement Speech To Bethune-Cookman

"If this behavior continues, your degrees will be mailed to you", he said.

At one point, the university's president interrupted Secretary DeVos.

When Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was invited to deliver the commencement address at a historically black Daytona Beach, Florida university, she probably didn't expect to be booed for the effort.

On Wednesday, DeVos pressed on with her speech, despite the boos.

A number of those graduating at the historically black university also turned their backs to protest Secretary DeVos.

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"One of the hallmarks of higher education and of democracy is the ability to converse with and learn from those with whom we disagree", she said. Most the students believe that her speech was made for political reasons and not because she had the universities best interests at heart, reports Al Jazeera.

She walked back those comments, saying, "Providing an alternative option to students denied the right to attend a quality school is the legacy of HBCUs".

DeVos, a billionaire without education experience, offended many African-Americans in February when she said historically black colleges are the "real pioneers when it comes to school choice".

Jackson went as far as to threaten to not hand out their diplomas and mail them to their homes instead.

In her speech, DeVos praised Bethune-Cookman for providing the means to help its students overcome adversity and serve others.

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President Trump said Secretary DeVos chose to speak at the university to show the administration's dedication to historically black colleges. Dozens of activists lined a sidewalk early Wednesday; their signs included "DeVos is not worthy".

"We are all about the business of making new friends", Jackson said at a pre-commencement news conference.

Jackson gave DeVos a hug after her speech, then took the podium when she left the stage.

Tyler Durrant, a graduating senior, said that the university should not have sent a graduating class out that way.

"DeVos was here to hear our differences and at the end of the day I think that's what happened", added Keith Holt, who received a master's degree in transformative leadership.

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"I have respect for all those who attended, including those who demonstrated their disagreement with me", she said.

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