Home |  Search |  Contact Us |  Website & Cookies Policy
News & Press Releases


His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma


His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma



Speaking at the Winter Graduation ceremony in the Whitla Hall, the Chancellor of Queen's University, His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma, emphasized the importance that the disciplines of law and education have in today's world. The Graduation ceremony was attended by the Principal, Professor Peter Finn and members of academic staff from St Mary as well as College graduands in the Masters of Education, BEd and Liberal Arts programmes.


The Chancellor said:

Law and education have never been more important than they are today. Nor, indeed, have our universities, which produce the lawyers and teachers of tomorrow.

Universities are the centres of research; cradles of discovery and innovation; the birthplace of much of the invention, creativity and knowledge; and development and growth which will continue to transform global society. They train leaders. They create and disseminate knowledge which enhances our understanding of ourselves and each other.

Universities prepare their graduates – men and women such as you in front of me today – to play leading roles in our changing and hopefully brave, new world. This is particularly the case at Queen’s, which offers world-class opportunities to benefit from all that enriches student life – cultural, social and sporting activities, as well as academic learning and experience.

And now, more than ever, it is true that no people are an island unto themselves. Social networking underpinned by the impact of mobile communications, ensures that you more than any previous generation, can sustain friendships around the world. Your time at Queen’s will have opened many opportunities and, in turn, you can help your University by reinforcing the excellent collaborations between Queen’s and leading institutions in India, China, Malaysia and North America. There is no doubt that the University’s international links benefit the community we serve. We are operating in a competitive, worldwide higher education environment and the stronger the University's international connections, the greater the contribution it can make to the economic and social development of Northern Ireland.

As Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, I have long believed and stated that education and learning are the keys to the three things which we hold dearest in the Commonwealth: democracy, development and diversity.

You who are graduating today have been privileged in the education you have received and the learning you have enjoyed. As you leave here today, I hope you will make the most of these experiences. You truly are at the beginning of a fascinating and exciting journey, full of promise and rewards: make sure you enjoy it.

Whether through research, teaching, or professional practice, the study of your disciplines will enable you, directly or indirectly, to serve society.

Albert Schweitzer, once gave the following advice in like position: “One thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.”

If you seek a role model for this purpose, you need look no further than our honorary graduands this afternoon: an eminent and influential educationalist and an international statesman. They are exemplars for all of us.

You too can be role models. You do not have to achieve the heights of worldly success to lead others. You can do so by your attitudes, your actions, your integrity and your values, as you go about your day-to-day life. All of us have it within us to lead by example, quite simply by how we choose to live our lives and use our unique gifts.

We can inspire others by our enthusiasm, our love of life and humanity, our respect for diversity, our behaviour in adversity and in triumph, our concern and sympathy for others – and in the way in which we use our strengths and handle our weaknesses.

So I ask you to use your gifts, your education, your being an ambassador of a great university, wisely and well. I urge you to aim high and give of yourselves and your abilities to their limits, both for your own and for the greater good. Be an inspiration. Make Queen’s even more proud of you.

Our warm felicitations, good luck, and our best wishes for the future go with you.