Birzeit University holds 43rd Commencement

On Friday, June 22, 2018, Birzeit University convened its 43rd annual graduation ceremony, celebrating the accomplishment of 2360 graduating students. The commencement exercises will continue for three subsequent days. The graduates of the first day represent the Faculty of Engineering and Technology, the Faculty of Education, and the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Graduates were surrounded by their family members, faculty, staff, and administrators to celebrate their achievements. Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, member of the Executive Committee at the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO); the chairman of the university's Board of Trustees (BoT), Dr. Hanna Nasir; and President Dr. Abdullatif Abu Hijleh, also attended the ceremony.

In his remarks, Abuhijleh congratulated the students on the occasion of achieving this important milestone and encouraged them to continue their journey towards excellence. “With every batch we graduate, we also celebrate the achievement of Birzeit’s vision to create a knowledge platform and what they can offer their nation. Throughout the years, we have grown from a small school for girls to one of the most prominent universities in the world. Today we offer various bachelor and master programs, and a unique PhD program in social sciences, with around 14,000students enrolled.”

Abuhijleh added, “The students have cemented Birzeit University’s place as the top university in Palestine, and its reputation as a center of excellence and the provider of a high-quality education. In pursuit of excellence, we continue to celebrate our achievements in academia. For the second year in a row, Birzeit University was ranked by QS, in its 2019 World University Rankings, in the top 2.7% of universities worldwide, a jump compared to last year’s rankings, in which the university was classified in the top 3% of higher education institutions in the world.”

The president also listed the new academic and non-academic programs the university launched in the academic year 2018/2019. “Our students, and our graduates, continuously impress us with their drive and ambition, and we look forward to hearing about their future achievements.”

Speaking on the behalf of the President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas, Dr.  Ashrawi congratulated the students, and expressed her enthusiasm at participating in the commencement ceremony. Ashrawi applauded the university’s ongoing evolution and constant achievements, not only locally but also internationally, which is reflected by the QS ranking. Ashrawi encouraged the students to continue their hard work, and unite their efforts to overcome the challenges that Palestinians face.

During the ceremony, Nasir conferred an honorary degree in Politics and Economics to the BoT member Samir Abdulhadi. Abdulhadi devoted his time to philanthropy and volunteer work and is a generous donor and contributor to the development of Birzeit University, by offering scholarships for students, and funding the building of an annex for the mathematics department.

Students Amin Alan and Habib Iskandar delivered a speech on behalf of the graduating students in which they underscored the skills and knowledge that they gained from the university during their years as students.

Graduates received their certificates after they professed their commitment to the graduates’ oath, read by President Abuhijleh.