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Growing on South East Technological University’s (SETU’s) ambitions to nurture and celebrate ‘global citizens’, this year’s conferring ceremonies feature the inaugural awarding of honorary doctorates and the graduation of over 2,200 students. 

The first conferring of awards is set to take place this week at the Carlow campus on Tuesday, 31 October and Wednesday, 1 November, and at the Waterford campus on Thursday, 2 November and Friday, 3 November. The Wexford campus conferring takes place on Friday, 10 November, with further ceremonies on the Carlow and Waterford campuses in January 2024.  

This year, SETU is set to become the first TU to bestow honorary doctorate awards to five distinguished individuals, chosen by the SETU Governing Body following a rigorous process of nomination.  

Honorary doctorates are to be conferred today on former politician Dr Maurice Manning in Carlow and on renowned actress Carrie Crowley and pioneering biomedical engineer, Prof. Annraoi de Paor on Friday in Waterford. Awards will be bestowed on internationally acclaimed writer Claire Keegan, Irish academic, and career diplomat and former Irish ambassador to the USA, Daniel Mulhall this coming January.   

Prestigious accolade

SETU President, Prof. Veronica Campbell says the conferring of an honorary degree is the most “prestigious accolade” that a university can bestow on a person.  

“I would like to extend my congratulations to Dr Maurice Manning, Carrie Crowley and Prof. Annraoi de Paor on the awarding of their SETU honorary doctorates at ceremonies this week in Carlow and Waterford,” states Prof. Campbell.   

The purpose of a SETU honorary doctorate is to recognise an individual’s exceptional achievements that have shaped society. The award also acknowledges that the individual’s endeavours exemplify the values SETU wishes to promote.    

The awards tie in with SETU’s first strategic plan – ‘Connecting for Impact,’ an ambitious five-year road map to ensure that SETU becomes a leading technological university for the south east, Ireland and beyond.  

Global citizens

Central to the strategic plan is placing students at the core of the university. Prof. Campbell says, “SETU is committed to providing an enriching and transformational learning experience that enables and supports our students to achieve their potential as lifelong learners and global citizens in a caring environment.”  

Addressing this year’s graduates, Prof. Campbell continues, “We often use the term ‘global citizen’ when we speak about our aspirations for our graduates. A ‘global citizen’ is driven by the belief of one world for one people, where everyone should have an equal chance to thrive.”  

Acknowledging that the disparities that exist in society, the President adds. “Some societies reap the rewards from excelling in scientific and social advances while others still face the challenges of war, preventable natural disasters, and famine.  

“As global citizens, we can no longer concern ourselves solely with our own local and national agendas, we cannot opt out of global conversations in the hope that these challenges will not impact on us. We are part of the one global community and as such, we are obliged to find solutions that ensure all citizens’ human rights are protected and the environment is respected for all.”  

In congratulating the 2023 graduates on their achievement, the President urges the “global citizens of the 21st century” to lead the way in making an impact and to use the skills they have learned at SETU “to analyse; to research, to think critically and to find solutions to create a fair and equitable society for all”.   

For more information on conferring ceremonies click here.