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Students at Howard University protested James Comey's speech

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Updated September 22, 2017 12:44 PM EDT

Students at Howard University protest after former FBI Director James Comey's speech.

Updated September 22, 2017 12:36 PM EDT

Students at Howard University chanted, "Get out James Comey, you ain't my homey."

Updated September 22, 2017 11:49 AM EDT

A group of student protesters interrupted former FBI Director James Comey's speech at Howard University's convocation.

As Comey took the stage, the group sang "We shall not be moved" and chanted "We are here to reclaim this space," as well as "No justice, no peace."

Comey initially stood quietly as the protesters continued, but later asked the group to give him a chance to speak. Another group of listeners countered, chanting "let him speak."

Comey pointed out the protesters in his speech while talking about how some in society today do not listen to each other.

Comey's speech referred to Howard as an "island" that allowed people to explore different ideas and to "train yourself" to be a citizen of the world.

He also noted that time can be used as a bridge to a job, but he said he was glad that the university encouraged students to be more than that.

Updated September 22, 2017 11:28 AM EDT

Former FBI Director James Comey delivers his first lecture at Howard University.

Former FBI Director James Comey will deliver the keynote address at Howard University's convocation on Friday in his new role on the school's faculty.

The keynote is part of a series of lectures and speeches Comey is expected to deliver throughout the academic year, according to NPR. Comey will serve as the Gwendolyn S. and Colbert I. King Endowed Chair in Public Policy during that time. While it is unclear exactly what Comey's series will focus on, the speeches will touch on "several topics," according to USA Today.

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Comey rose to national prominence after being caught up in the tumultuous 2016 election. He oversaw the investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's email server and was fired by President Donald Trump in May after Trump asked him to cease an investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn. Comey testified before Congress on his conversations with Trump in June, during which he said he had concerns about the president while serving as director.

The former FBI director and U.S. deputy attorney general has kept a low profile ever since, but noted he is happy to take his new position.

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"Howard has a longstanding history of being a vibrant academic community and the perfect place to have rich dialogue on many of the most pressing issues we face today," said Comey in a statement. "I look forward to contributing to this remarkable institution and engaging students and faculty alike."

Howard University President Wayne A.I. Frederick hailed Comey, noting his "expertise and understanding of the challenge we continue to face today will go a long way in sparking rich discussion and advancing meaningful debates across campus."

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