H E Dr Mohammed J K Alghatam
Public Orator, Professor Ron McCaffer, presented the Honorary Graduand at the Degree Congregation held on the afternoon of Thursday 11 July 2002.
It is always a pleasure to introduce
an honorary graduand to Congregation, but even more so when the subject
is one of our own.
And that is certainly the case with
Dr Mohammed Alghatam.
We are delighted to welcome him back
to the place where he spent much of his intellectual youth, and equally
delighted that on this occasion he is accompanied by his wife and six
children. You are all more than welcome.
Dr Alghatam was always hungry for academic
achievement and he has been awarded a host of certificates and diplomas
in mechanical and electrical engineering from institutes in his native
Bahrein, in the United Kingdom, and in the United States of America.
We first met him at here Loughborough
in 1977 when he came to us to study for an MSc based on an analysis of
stress, fluid flow and heat transfer. He evidently approved of us for
he stayed on in the Department of Mechanical Engineering to complete a
PhD in computer-simulated energy.
Mohammed returned to Bahrein, spending
ten years in the private sector and then twenty years in his countrys
military defence force. Workaholic that he is, he went back to study,
this time obtaining a Masters degree in Military Art and Science
from the Army Staff College in Kansas, U.S.A.
He won accolades along the way, being
decorated many times both at home and abroad. His honours include seven
military decorations and medals, His Highness the Crown Princes
Prize for engineering research, and the State Recognition Prize for distinguished
national achievements. France made him a Knight of the Legion of Honour.
These awards speak for themselves,
and mark out Dr Alghatam as a man of exceptional energy and achievement.
But it is not for this that we honour
him today. We do so primarily because of his third career.
For in 1995, drawing on his impressive
record of academic achievement, he returned to the arena of higher education
as President of the University of Bahrein.
With typical energy and panache he
fought to give it a more robust constitution, insisting on and
achieving an emphasis on the healthy tradition of intellectual
rigour. During his period in office he transformed the universitys
reputation, making it one of the most vibrant academic centres in the
United Arab Emirates.
He has always remained a good friend
of Loughborough, his alma mater and signed a memorandum of understanding
with Loughborough to promote partnership ventures and joint initiatives.
His success as President inevitably
led to his departure from the post.
His qualities were fully recognised and he was appointed Bahreins Minister of Education. He is now in a position to transform every other academic institution in his country.
We are proud that Loughborough played a significant part in Dr Alghatams remarkable success story. Chancellor, I present to you and the University, Dr Mohammed Alghatam, BSc, MSc, PhD, for the award of the degree of Doctor of Technology, for his services to Education, honoris causa.
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