'Saved by the Bell' Principal Dennis Haskins -- a.k.a. Mr. Belding! -- Graduates From College!
By Elizabeth VanMetre
Mr. Belding graduated from college! Well, Dennis Haskins, who played the beloved Saved by the Bell principal, did, that is.
The 65-year-old actor graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in theater and speech on Saturday. He shared a selfie on Instagram that showed proudly displayed his silk cap and gown.
Haskins, who left school decades ago, received a "Distinguished Alumni" honor in 2000, but he explained in a statement on the school’s website that he still felt like he was missing something.
"As successful as some have said I've been, from the incredible success of Saved by the Bell, other quality acting roles, the books I've written, and even UTC Distinguished Alumni in 2000, there's always been something missing for me -- my college degree," he wrote.
"Over the years I've thought about and even pursued finishing that degree," Haskins continued. "Now, with the forward thinking policies of this great university that I love so much that have benefited many other graduates, I join these graduates in holding my head high having earned my liberal arts degree in theater from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga! Go Chattanooga! And Go Mocs!"
The institution gave a nod to the actor, playing the Saved by the Bell theme song as he took the stage to receive his diploma.
Since every iteration of the ‘90s hit ended in 2000, Haskins has made guest appearances on shows like New Girl, Mad Men and Hot in Cleveland.
In September, James Franco reprised his Freaks and Geeks character and played characters from Saved by the Bell in a hilarious West Side Story parody for his show, Making a Scene With James Franco. To see what happens when all these ‘90s characters collide, watch the video below.