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Missy Elliott got some hometown recognition this weekend when Norfolk State University awarded her an honorary doctorate degree.

The musician received the honor Saturday during the college’s fall commencement ceremony. “I am proud of y’all, and y’all should be proud of your self,” she told the class of 400 students, per The Virginian Pilot. “I want you to look at each other and say, ‘You already won.’ ‘Cause y’all coulda been doing anything else the last few years, y’all coulda been wildin’ out, but y’all decided to finish the course. And that’s major.”

“I’m looking around and I see innovators, visionaries, leaders created in here,” Missy continued. “I want to see these same faces years from now saying … ’I became famous, I became president, I became a lawyer.’ All of those things.”

Elliott’s honorary degree recognized her “outstanding professional achievements and extraordinary contributions to public service.” She also received the Presidential Commencement Medallion, the institution’s most prestigious award, at the ceremony, during which she donated a $20,000 check toward their “area of greatest needs.”

“Two time Doctorate ‘Dr. Elliott’ I am so Humbly Grateful. Thank you@norfolkstateuniversity for having me today & showing so much love 🙌🏾 To the Class Of 2022,” Elliott wrote on Instagram along with shots of her on her special day. “May your Journey be Successful/ Fearless/ Determined to be the BEST! Behold The Green & Gold!!!!”

Elliott received her first honorary doctorate in 2019 from Berklee College of Music.

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