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The Home Depot Congratulates 2023 HBCU Graduates

The Home Depot Congratulates HBCU Graduates
The Home Depot mascot Phil the Bucket sends congratulations to 2023 HBCU Graduates

Dear Class of 2023: 

For years, your friends, family and professors have pushed you toward this moment. Now it’s here. You did it! 

Through a variety of programs, The Home Depot has shown its support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (“HBCUs”) and their graduates. As part of this support, here is some advice that you might find useful. 

Embrace your emotions    
Your HBCU has prepared you for a bright future and you’re ready to embrace it. You have every reason to be excited and happy. Enjoy the feeling – you’ve earned it. 

Over the past few years, you’ve gotten used to seeing the same people and places every day. Graduation means that will no longer be the case, and it’s okay to be sad about this. If you do start to feel down, remember that even if you have to work a bit harder to see them, your friends, your campus and your HBCU family will always be there for you when you need them.

Be proud   

You’ve spent four long years meeting your professors’ high expectations. You should be proud of yourself for making the good choices and doing the hard work that led to this day. 

You should also be proud of the legacy that you are joining. The list of HBCU graduates who have contributed to – and who continue to contribute to – advancements in areas like the arts, science, business and law is far too long to list here. No matter your chosen field, you can find an HBCU alumnus who can serve as a role model.

Joining this legacy of world-changers should give you a sense of pride beyond measure. Knowing that your story might inspire future HBCU graduates one day should only add to that feeling. 

Be grateful 

Graduation is a busy time but make time for gratitude. Be grateful for the professors who accepted nothing less than your best. Be grateful for the staff who looked out for you. Be grateful for the friends who lifted you up, the classmates who helped you survive those late-night study sessions and anyone else who made it just a bit easier for you to get that cap and gown. Before graduation, make the time to find these people and thank them. They will appreciate it more than you know. 

Speaking of appreciation, find some time during graduation to thank your parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, grandparents or chosen family. Your acknowledgement of their sacrifices and support will mean the world to them. 

Give back 

HBCUs encourage their graduates to give back and The Home Depot shares this belief. Your HBCU has prepared you for success. Once that success is achieved, don’t forget what your HBCU taught you about the challenges faced by many communities in our nation and our world. Help others whenever you can. Use your HBCU education and connections to improve every workplace, neighborhood and community that you touch. 

Do the right thing 

“Do the Right Thing” is more than an acclaimed movie written and directed by a famous HBCU alumnus. It’s a core value at The Home Depot and it’s something your HBCU instilled in you as well. 

As you enter the workplace, you’ll have to make a lot of decisions. Some will be easy. Others will present moral or ethical dilemmas. When you are confronted with a choice, do the right thing. Let your values guide you and you can never go wrong.  

Remember what matters 

The Home Depot is deeply invested in your success and the success of every HBCU graduate. But remember, success cannot solely be judged by money, fame or achievements. Define success on your own terms. Live boldly, but don’t neglect the small, quiet moments. It’s the little things that truly make up the key memories in our lives.    

Work hard to build your career but work just as hard on maintaining your relationships. When it’s all said and done, your family – biological or chosen – are the ones who will be there for you to share life’s joys and sorrows. Money matters, but there is no better investment than your loved ones.


The Home Depot congratulates every 2023 HBCU graduate. Your journey is just beginning. The world you are entering is not perfect, but your HBCU gave you the tools to make it better. Like HBCU graduates before you, you will take what seems impossible today and make it tomorrow’s reality. 

Be bold and change the world.

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