Schools have canceled graduation ceremonies this year for millions of American students. So a slate of high-profile graduation speakers—from former US president Barack Obama to Lady Gaga—are delivering their inspirational talks to the class of 2020 virtually.
In this weekend’s finale, the cast of Saturday Night Live parodied the trend. Alec Baldwin, playing US president Donald Trump, delivered a commencement speech to the “Class of Covid-19.”
The skit starts with the high school principal, played by Kate McKinnon, saying that while students will be getting their high school diplomas, the bad news is they are “about to pay full price for fancy colleges when they’re all just University of Phoenix online with worse tech support.” Many universities are struggling to find a way to open their campuses safely this fall.
“You’re so lucky to be graduating right now,” says Baldwin’s Trump, citing the slew of “good jobs” out there for the class of 2020: “Grocery store bouncer, cam girl, porch pirate, amateur nurse, and coal.” He then took a sip out of a jug of Clorox disinfectant beach, calling it “good ole’ invincibility juice.”
He goes on to share some words of wisdom:
“Look I’m going to be honest with you guys. I know this is hard. So I’m going to give you some real advice. Believe in yourselves, and you can achieve anything. Look at me. I started out as a son of a simple wealthy slumlord, and grew to become a billionaire, and president, and the world’s leading expert of infectious diseases. Surround yourself with the worst people you can find, that way you’ll always shine.”
He adds, “Live every day like it’s your last because we’re going to let the virus run wild.”
This weekend marked the third remote episode of SNL amid the coronavirus pandemic.