Vanessa Williams has received her bachelor degree in fine arts from Syracuse University, nearly 25 years after she dropped out to become the first black Miss America.
The 45-year-old actress-singer, who stars in ABC's "Ugly Betty," also delivered the convocation address Saturday to graduates of Syracuse's College of Visual and Performing Arts.
She encouraged her fellow graduates to "treasure this moment." "These days are irreplaceable and are the beginning of the rest of your life," she said, according to The Syracuse Post-Standard.
When she accepted her diploma, Williams raised it to show her mother and children.
Williams attended Syracuse's drama department as a musical theater major from 1981-1983. She earned the remaining credits for her degree through industry experience and performances on stage and screen.