Barack and Michelle Obama to Lead YouTube’s Virtual Graduation Event

Michelle Obama and Barack Obama (Credit: WhiteHouse.Gov)

Former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama will headline YouTube’s “Dear Class of 2020,” a virtual commencement celebration honoring high school and college seniors whose graduation ceremonies were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a Tuesday press release, YouTube announced the multi-hour event will premiere on Saturday, June 6.

“Graduation is a tradition that students and families look forward to and with the current state of the world, YouTube is lending some inspiration in the form of a virtual commencement,” said Susanne Daniels, global head of content for YouTube. “We hope bringing together noteworthy, influential speakers along with performances from some of their favorite artists will provide encouragement for the students who have worked so hard to get here.”

Related Story: LeBron James to Host Virtual Graduation for Class of 2020

The Obamas will each deliver commencement speeches. Additional speakers include Lady Gaga, former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, CEO of Alphabet and Google Sundar Pichai, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Malala Yousafzai, and pop group BTS.

“Dear Class of 2020” will also include appearances by Alicia Keys, Kelly Rowland, Kerry Washington, Chloe x Halle, Zendaya, YouTube creators Jackie Aina, AsapSCIENCE, Dude Perfect, Mr. Kate, And The Try Guys.

The event premieres Saturday, June 6 12pm PT / 3pm ET and can be viewed on the YouTube Originals channel and the Learn@Home site. The full schedule of commencement events will be available on the Learn@Home site starting May 17. Graduates can also sign their names on the “Dear Class of 2020″Shout Out Board at

YouTube’s announcement is the latest in a growing number of star-studded virtual graduation ceremonies.

LeBron James will host “Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020” on May 16. The one-hour special includes appearances by James, Lena Waithe, Yara Shahidi, Bad Bunny, Charli D’Amelio, Dixie D’Amelio, Chika, YBN Cordae, Loren Gray, H.E.R., the Jonas Brothers, Brandan Bmike Odums, Ben Platt, Henry Platt, Jonah Platt, Megan Rapinoe, and Pharrell Williams.

Oprah Winfrey will deliver the commencement speech at Facebook’s livestream event on May 15. Awkwafina, Jennifer Garner, Lil Nas X and Simone Biles are also scheduled to speak.