A college student missed his graduation because of train delays, but that didn’t stop people on the train car from throwing him an impromptu graduation ceremony right in the subway car.
On Tuesday morning, Hunter College student Jerich Alcantara was on the E train traveling from Queens to his 10 a.m. graduation ceremony at the college’s Brookdale campus in Manhattan. However, the New York City subway system did not cooperate and there were major delays.
Around 9 a.m. Alcantara’s train broke down. “The train’s emergency brakes went off and they couldn’t fix it for an hour and a half,” Alcantara told Fox 5 NY. “So after that, they called rescue trains to pick us up and those didn’t show up for another 20 or 30 minutes.”
The train was stuck in the tunnel for more than three hours. Alcantara was already dressed in his purple cap and gown, so fellow straphangers decided to throw the student a graduation ceremony in the subway car. While he missed on his official graduation ceremony, commuters made sure that he had a proper graduation on the subway car, complete with a “dean,” a diploma, graduation music, and an adoring crowd.
“We got my buddy to hand me the diploma that he drew up on his phone and he handed it to me shook my hand like he was the dean, it was great,” Alcantara said. While Alcantara accepted his diploma from the “dean,” another rider played “The Pomp and Circumstance Marches” composed by Sir Edward Elgar through a portable speaker he happened to have in his backpack.
“I announced to the whole train I said ‘Hey guys, thanks for coming out today to see me walk and graduate,'” the happy grad said.
The president of Hunter College said that she looks forward to personally handing Alcantara his diploma. Not in a subway car.
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