Published: 13th January 2022
Education is the key to social justice, empowerment: Amrita University confers honorary doctorates on Jeffrey Sachs and Kailash Satyarthi
The university also instituted a fellowship in the name of Jeffrey Sachs and a scholarship programme dedicated to an underprivileged child nominated by the Satyarthi Foundation
Amrita University has established an initiative to award an honorary doctorate to honour the world’s leading scientists, academics, and public servants, for their contributions to humanity. During the first honorary doctorate ceremony conducted on January 12, the university chose to confer the Doctorate in Humane Letters on Jeffrey D Sachs, a global economist for sustainable development and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Kailash Satyarthi.
"Amrita University espouses exactly what the world needs. What's remarkable for me is that the university is based upon the exact two ideas of sustainable development that I believe in. The first is an intellectual and scientific one, to understand our world and its challenges. The second one is the ethical side of sustainable development. It is the combination of the two that makes sustainable development such a valuable part of our lives," said Dr Jeffrey Sachs upon receiving the honorary doctorate,
"Education is the key to social justice, equality, sustainability, peace and empowerment. If something has to be globalised for a sustainable and just world, it is compassion. Today we have 160 million children working as child labourers at the cost of their future and dreams. Poverty, child labour and illiteracy make a vicious circle and that needs to be addressed today. That is why we have to have compassion in solving problems. Students at Amrita University are the real change who are most fortunate to inculcate the values of humanity while transforming the world," remarked Nobel Laureate Kailash Satyarthi on the occasion of receiving the DLitt from the University.
"The Indian government has strived to root out child labour for decades now. But passing legislation alone against the social evil is not enough. The poverty of the families of child labourers is the ultimate problem and the government has been working to alleviate this issue," said Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Environment, Forest and Climate Change, who was also present virtually on the occasion.
As part of the conferment of the honorary doctorate to Dr Jeffrey Sachs, Amrita University also committed to providing a full doctoral fellowship in his name in the field of sustainable development. The first scholar to be the recipient of the fellowship is Nitin Kumar, a researcher who has worked extensively among rural communities. The university also initiated a full scholarship for an underprivileged child nominated by the Satyarthi Foundation for completing their higher education at Amrita University.