The 1969 Class of Arkansas AM&N College/University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff celebrated its 50th reunion during the 2019 commencement at the Pine Bluff Convention Center May 11.

Motivated by the current national push to support historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs,) members the class, led by Joan Courtney Weaver and Verma Kentle Jones, attended their alma mater’s 2019 ceremony, according to a news release.

Twenty-two classmates dressed in black and gold were seated in a VIP section during the commencement.

“They proudly donned a gold honor cord to represent their 50th year of graduation from AM&N College,” according to the release.

One classmate said: “I really enjoyed the fellowship with my classmates.”

Another said: “To God be the Glory for allowing us t0 celebrate our 50th anniversary. We are family! I felt loved.”

Still, another said: “My grandson made me proud by being a Cum Laud honor graduate.”

During the ceremony, classmates witnessed one of their own, Larry B. Cooper, receive an honorary doctorate, according to the release.

“It was truly a wonderful experience to have the support of my classmates and to watch the 2019 graduates experience what I did 50 years ago at the same university,” Cooper said.

Weaver hopes that future alumni take celebration of their 50th year of graduation with the graduation classes to another level, to show support.

“It was all about coming together, collectively to model unity maintained by alums from this HBCU class,” she said.