Honorary Doctor of the University of Wollongong
Citation delivered by Professor Gerard Sutton, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Wollongong on the occasion of the admission of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand to the degree of Doctor of University of Wollongong (honoris causa) on 27 November 2002.
The University of Wollongong is pleased to confer the degree of Doctor of the University of Wollongong to His Majesty Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, in recognition of His Majesty’s distinguished leadership and humanitarianism. His Majesty’s achievements are aspirations for us all to follow.
His Majesty was born in the United States in 1927 and educated in Switzerland, then the home of the League of Nations. The ideals of the League – international friendship, mutual aid and peace – stayed with him into later years. He is now revered for his commitment to a goal that is closely identified with the mission of the University of Wollongong – the development and bonding of human and technological potential “for the benefit of the region, the nation and the international community.”
His Majesty’s decision to bring the monarchy into direct contact with the provincial population was an extraordinarily transforming act. He sponsors and takes an active, personal interest in over 2000 projects which encourage self-reliance and local initiative; promote appropriate technologies; or conserve and develop natural resources. He does not recoil from self-imposed responsibilities involving the dedication of his time and skills for the benefit of this people. Indeed, His Majesty embodies attributes which we expect of a Wollongong graduate: ethical standards, a desire to seek improved solutions and participate in social change, and an acceptance of individual obligations. He has given his country wise leadership and counsel and committed himself successfully to supporting peace and independence.
It is a great privilege for the University of Wollongong to present the degree of Doctor of the University of Wollongong to His Majesty Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand.