The Los Angeles native, 39, shared a series of Instagram photos from the big day on Friday, June 4. In one snap, Natalia, 18, wore her graduation gown while holding her bedazzled cap, decorated in colors for the University of Southern California. The new grad plans to attend college there in the fall.
Natalia is the eldest daughter of Vanessa and the late Kobe Bryant, who died at age 41 in January 2020 in a helicopter crash along with his daughter Gianna, 13. The couple have two other daughters, Bianka, 4, and Capri, 23 months.
“Daddy, Mommy, Gigi, Bianka and Capri are so proud of you @nataliabryant!!!” Vanessa captioned one photo, which showed a close-up of the mortarboard. In addition to the letters, “USC,” the hat also featured a quote from Kobe reading, “Everything negative — pressure, challenges — is all an opportunity for me to rise.”
The proud mama also shared a video of Natalia walking across the stage to collect her diploma on an outdoor stage. “Congratulations Natalia!” she wrote via Instagram. “We will ALL be with you every step of the way.”
After the ceremony, the Bryants celebrated with a small party attended by family friends Ciara and her husband, Russell Wilson. The couple posed for a photo with the grinning teen. “Uncle @dangerusswilson, Auntie @ciara and @nataliabryant ~ family ❤️,” Vanessa captioned the snap, which Natalia reposted to her own Instagram page.
“Proud Auntie and Unc,” the singer, 35 commented on the post. The NFL player, 32, added, “So proud of you Nani!!! 😍😍😍 USC!!! You earned it all! 🙌❤️”
Last month, Vanessa spoke at the ceremony for her late husband’s induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
“I used to always avoid praising my husband in public because I felt like he got enough praise from his fans,” the former model, who married the NBA star in 2001, said. “Along the road, someone had to bring him back to reality.”
He found out about his induction shortly before his death and was excited about the honor.
“He asked the Hall of Fame to specifically add a sixth ticket for Capri,” Vanessa added. “He was so happy. He didn’t really talk about upcoming awards, but he did mention this one a week before he and Gigi passed. My husband and I were sitting at our kitchen island and he and I had a conversation about my mother- and father-in-law attending tonight’s enshrinement.”
Keep scrolling to see more photos from Natalia’s graduation festivities: