Aga Khan University celebrates founder’s day, 40th anniversary

KARACHI, Mar 18 (APP): The Aga Khan University (AKU) on Saturday celebrated the graduation of the Class of 2022, its first-ever Founder’s Day and the University’s 40th anniversary here on Saturday.

On the occasion, Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah was the Chief Guest.

He said, “I am glad to be able to take this opportunity to thank the members of the AKU community who came to the aid of their fellow citizens in their hour of need, whether as volunteers or as donors.

The fact that so many AKU students participated in the University’s flood response speaks highly of them and of the education that they have received here.”

According to a communique here, simultaneous ceremonies were held in Pakistan, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda and broadcast online to an international audience of AKU’s friends and supporters.

Princess Zahra Aga Khan attended the ceremony in Karachi and shared a message from His Highness the Aga Khan, Founder and Chancellor of the University.

A total of 777 students graduated from AKU’s global campuses with diplomas and degrees in 19 fields, bringing the total number of diplomas and degrees awarded by the University to more than 19,000, including more than 4,500 in East Africa.

In Pakistan, the School of Nursing and Midwifery graduated its 5,000th student. Students graduated in nursing, medicine, education and media and communications.

“Graduands, my wish today is that you will know the joy of planting hope in people’s lives, of building bridges of understanding, of venturing into the uncharted waters where new knowledge is discovered,” His Highness the Aga Khan said.

“May your futures be rich in challenges embraced and overcome. May you be bold amid uncertainty, and see your boldness rewarded.”

AKU dates its inception from the receipt of its Charter from the government of Pakistan on March 16, 1983, making this its 40th anniversary week. Founder’s Day is a new annual tradition at AKU.

On Founder’s Day, the University reflects on the vision of His Highness the Aga Khan, celebrates AKU’s impact and recognizes all those who are making the founding vision a reality: faculty, staff, donors, volunteers, students, alumni and partners.

Princess Zahra Aga Khan expressed her gratitude to the global University community for the “magnificent gift” of its support for AKU over the past four decades. “As we mark its inaugural Founder’s Day, its 40th anniversary and the graduation of the Class of 2022, AKU has never had more to celebrate,” she said. “I am deeply, deeply grateful to everyone who has made its journey possible.”

Sulaiman Shahabuddin paid tribute to His Highness and “his vision of a university that reconciles loyalty to international standards with service to those in needs, that prepares its students to use knowledge to identify and solve problems, that demonstrates that science is the property of no single culture, but of all humanity.”

The Chief Guest in Tanzania was Ambassador Manfredo Fanti, Head of the European Union Delegation to Tanzania and to the East African Community. In Uganda, the Chief Guest was Ms Cornelia Penzel, KfW Country Director for Uganda. In Kenya, the Chief Guest was Dr Beatrice Muganda Inyangala, Principal Secretary, State Department for Higher Education and Research.