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Oct. 26: Carnegie Mellon University Awards Honorary Doctorate To Former India President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam


Ken Walters                           

Carnegie Mellon University Awards Honorary Doctorate
To Former India President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

PITTSBURGH — Carnegie Mellon University conferred an honorary doctorate to former Indian President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in a special ceremony Oct. 17, 2007.

Kalam, who completed his presidential tenure in July, received a Doctor of Science and Technology degree from the university. During his five-year presidency, Kalam focused efforts to transform India from its present developing nation status to a developed nation by 2020. He has also provided a road map for energy independence of the country by 2030. His book, "India 2020 - A Vision for the New Millennium," is popular throughout India and has been translated in many languages.

"As engineer, educator, leader of a great nation and world statesman, Dr. Kalam has inspired millions with his commitment to science and technology as instruments of peace and global development," said Carnegie Mellon President Jared L. Cohon. "We especially honor his unswerving belief in the transformative power of learning."

"[The] higher the number of creative minds in an organization, the best results of invention and discoveries will emerge," Dr. Kalam told an audience of more than 600 people at the ceremony. "A unique academic environment results into great thinking that leads to creativity. Carnegie Mellon is one of the great example(s) for this creative environment."

Sunil Wadhwani, chief executive officer of iGate Corporation and a vice chairman of Carnegie Mellon's Board of Trustees, lauded Dr. Kalam as both a statesman and an educator.   

"He is truly a remarkable human being who sets an inspiring example of how much can be accomplished in one life," Wadhwani said during the ceremony. "President Kalam has shown it is possible to have big dreams, make a difference and do it without compromising values."

Earlier in the day, Dr. Kalam presented Ratan Tata with the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy during an awards ceremony at the Carnegie Music Hall in Pittsburgh. He also met with Carnegie Mellon students and faculty during his two-day visit to the campus.