Matt Easton of Brigham Young University has given an epic speech at his college’s graduation ceremony announcing for the first time that he is gay.
According to Easton, the Valedictorian for the College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences at BYU, he was celebrating “a few of my own personal victories” during his time at the university.
The 24-year-old political science major also spoke of his experience as a freshman and how discovering his mum had terminal cancer led him to realize “how to cherish and who to cherish.”
Describing the moments where he struggled with his own identity, he announced to the crowd:
“I stand before my family, friends and graduating class today to say that I am proud to be a gay son of God.”
Thanking those who supported him, he shared on Twitter:
“I feel so so lucky to have had a chance to share some of my story with so many people.”
He also revealed that during his time at the school, he didn’t focus on some factors of his life as much as others.
“BYU has a very strict honor code, a lot of rules about homosexuality and being gay, so during my time at BYU my focus was almost entirely on my studies. I’m like, ‘I want to do well in school, I want to focus on my career and when the time is right, I’ll work on other aspects of myself.’
He felt his speech was an opportunity for him to:
“focus on being more authentic. I thought I have this platform, I have this opportunity, and for me, this is what I want to do I want to finish my time and start this new chapter being as true to myself as I could,” he said.