Orla Guerin receives Honorary Doctorate from DIT

 

Dublin, 19 November, 2005 Orla Guerin, BBC¿s Middle East Correspondent, was conferred today with an Honorary Doctorate from Dublin Institute of Technology.  

 Orla Guerin, BBC's Foreign Correspondent, pictured with Tara Finglas  who graduated with a BA in Journalism. Tara recently won a competition with the UN for writing a piece on the misconceptions about asylum seekers.

Guerin, a former graduate of DIT, was honoured by the Institute for her outstanding contribution to journalism and was conferred with the award in front of hundreds of students and their families at the Institute¿s Annual Faculty of Applied Arts Graduation held in St Patrick¿s Cathedral.

Once

described by journalist and Balkan historian Misha Gleny as `the coolest journalist under fire¿, Orla Guerin is currently the BBC's principal television news reporter in the Middle East. A journalism graduate from the College of Commerce, Rathmines (now DIT), Orla worked as a news reporter for RTE television before being appointed Eastern Europe correspondent.  She joined the BBC in 1995, and has since worked tirelessly to report stories from some of the most dangerous and war-torn parts of the world.

In presenting Guerin with the Honorary Doctorate, Professor Brian Norton, the President of DIT, said that the Institute wished to acknowledge the enormous contribution that Orla has made to journalism both here in Ireland and internationally. Applauding her supreme professionalism and skill in communicating complex stories, Professor Norton described Orla as ¿a journalist not only by profession but also by passion¿.

Professor Norton made the point that, ¿at a time when standards in journalism have been criticised, excellence in the profession should be celebrated" and added that ¿by accepting the award today she also becomes a standard-bearer for DIT graduates who are now starting out on their own careers.¿

Nominations for the Institute¿s honorary degrees can be submitted by any member of staff in DIT to the Honorary Degrees Committee which has representatives of Academic Council and Governing Body.. Candidates are chosen on the basis of academic distinction; service to the community; service to business or industry; service to education; cultural, artistic or sporting achievement.

Previous recipients of Honorary Doctorates from Dublin Institute of Technology have included the Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern; educationalist, Salters Sterling; football hero, Niall Quinn; journalist and broadcaster, Marian Finucane; composer Bill Whelan; sports star, Sonia O¿Sullivan; Former President of Ireland, Mary Robinson; the Former provost of Trinity College, Dr. Tom Mitchell; actor Pierce Brosnan and most recently, former Ireland football manager, Brian Kerr.

In all, over 4,000 students will graduate from Dublin Institute of Technology this year.  Today¿s Ceremony saw hundreds of students graduate from programmes as diverse as Journalism, Fine Art, Music, Social Care and Legal Studies.

Conferring of Doctorate of Philosophy honoris causa on Orla Guerin  - journalist and foreign correspondent - oration

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