As if they weren’t iconic enough already, pop stars Justin Timberlake and Missy Elliott received honorary doctorates from Berklee College of Music in Boston on Saturday. Alex Lacamoire, who has won multiple Grammy and Tony Awards for his work as music director on hit musicals like Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen, also received one.
“I just want y’all to know there will be ups and downs. Prepare for that, but don’t give up,” Elliott said in her remarks to the graduating class. “I know y’all may hear that all the time, but if I had given up a long time ago I wouldn’t be standing here today. You have come too far to quit.”
Later, in a celebratory Instagram post, Elliott added, “Create your own lane!!!! Sincerely Dr. Missy Elliott” alongside a video of herself dancing with her new degree.
Timberlake offered an open invite to the graduates in his own remarks.
“I hope that in the years to come, two things will happen,” he said. “One, I will represent you in the way that you most hope for. And two, I look around and see this graduating class. Meet me at the studio. I want to see y’all!”
Check out the videos and Instagram posts above.