The Vice President and our Host,
Excellencies High Commissioner and Colleagues,
Distinguished Faculty Members,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is so tempting an indulgence on my part to have to propose my remarks after High Commissioner George Mkondiwa has spoken so eloquently and authoritatively.
For your information, in his previous functions as Chief Secretary of Malawi he somehow was my immediate boss, by extension! To put it more precise, while he was in that high position I was serving his counterpart, the then Chief Secretary of Tanzania as Personal Assistant: So, you will see how my years are well founded or rather justified.
However, it is appropriate for me to appreciate, as he rightly has done so, the hospitality and very warm reception by our host since our arrival in this beautiful scenery. We feel indebted so much and we thank you.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A graduation such as today's is unique in many aspects; For our graduates, this graduation is a special occasion, a time of celebration a time for a deserved sense of achievement; and once the festivities are over, a time for contemplation of a new chapter in life. A door onto the world of work is opening along with all the joy, pains and responsibilities that go with it.
For the University, it is a time when it celebrates and salutes the very fine graduates it has produced. And indeed, this is a fitting conclusion to yet another academic year.
For the parents who have funded their loved girls and boys, this event marks the fruition of investments they have made in them and also for the country.
Dear Graduates you have worked hard, and your parents, families and sponsors have sacrificed much to get you here. You owe yourselves a round of applause for all the effort and dedication you have invested in order for you to be here today. For most of you, today's success comes on the back of many sacrifices and challenges each one of you with your own story to tell and experience to share. Frankly, it does not matter how many mountains you climbed, or how many rivers you crossed, or how many obstacles you had to conquer. Today what matters is that you are all here to reap the fruits of your labour in the presence of some members of families and friends.
For three or four years Chandigarh University (CU) has been your corner. But today the University is releasing you into the world. You will all scatter across the countries and beyond and each of you will find a new corner, better equipped to positively impact the world around you because of your time well-spent here at CU.
But, as you leave this University, remember that you are carrying the flag of a unique training ground and you have our best wishes for your future. I urge you to make CU proud through your contribution to not only individual families but also, and most importantly, to your respective countries as a whole.
I also invite you to take a continuing interest in you soon to be alma mater and I am quite sure the University has some openings for those interested to pursue further programs. We should be inspired by the wisdom by Henry Ford Who once said: "Anyone who stops learning is old, weather at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young." Hence, the greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.
I believe the University is capable and willing to offer any such continued longtime training, including through placement opportunities and internship programs. Personally, I would be happy to see some few folks from the 12 graduates from Tanzania opt to continue with further studies at CU.
For, it has been said elsewhere, Quote:
"The mind is like a garden, if it is not watered, and cultivated, weeds will take over."
I should not be eating more into your lunch and other related ceremonies for this special day. But I must conclude by reiterating my sincere appreciation for this invite and also for the warm reception you accorded to us.
My final parting words will be better reflected in the following anecdote:
"Two friends were talking about a guy. "I will never invite him to my parties again," one said "Last time he did something I didn't like" "What was that?" "He came." You invited us. We hope you meant it. And we hope we have not done anything to deny us an invitation to the next occasion.
I thank you for your kind attention.