In a decision described as “a first for both universities,” UBC and Simon Fraser University (SFU) will be jointly celebrating His Highness the Aga Khan’s contributions to humanity.
In a joint ceremony on October 19, both universities will formally award their respective honorary doctorate of laws degrees, which recognize outstanding achievement or significant contribution to the public good, to the Aga Khan.
“In his capacity as spiritual leader of the Ismaili Muslim community, his commitment to helping fight poverty and improve health and education for millions of people in underdeveloped and war-torn parts of the world is truly remarkable, and serves as an inspiration to us all,” said UBC President Santa Ono.
At UBC, the university and the Aga Khan Academies’ Teacher Preparation Programme are working to help young Kenyan teachers achieve International Baccalaureate (IB) teaching certifications.
At SFU, the university’s Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies and Aga Khan University’s Institute for the Study of Muslim Civilisations created Expressions of Diversity — a summer school on Muslim diversity — to expand the understanding of Muslims.
“He has in this context supported programs at both of our universities, and we are grateful for his generosity in promoting positive change in the lives of young people and in advancing the well-being of the communities we serve,” said SFU President Andrew Petter
The Aga Khan will also receive a separate honorary degree from the University of Calgary on October 17.