We aim to become a Knowledge Nation: PM Barzani said during AUK fourth graduation ceremony

Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – President of the Kurdistan Region Nechirvan Barzani and Prime Minister Masrour Barzani congratulated the new diploma-holders at the graduation ceremony of the American University of Kurdistan in Dohuk on Tuesday. 

145 students from various university departments have graduated in the fourth batch from the American University in Dohuk. The ceremony was also attended by Iraqi Foreign Minister Fouad Hussein and the UN envoy to Iraq, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, in addition to Kurdish and foreign parliamentary government officials and academics.

In his speech, Kurdistan Region Prime Minister greeted the attendees, and praised the efforts of the AUK Board of Trustees and the efforts of 2022 graduated students, saying “ I am proud of you all for the commitment and drive you have shown to get you here.”

During his speech, Barzani also recognized the other partners in particular the US Department of State for its generous grants which have led to partnerships with American universities. Barzani pointed out that it is through everyone’s support that helped the university to turn into “a hub of learning which is producing leaders of the future, who will play integral roles in building and developing our society.”

Barzani explained that the establishment of this university “advanced my vision to the road map of the opportunities which would start to unlock our nation’s potential. Every graduation ceremony, such as this one, transforms that vision into a reality.”

“Skilled and accomplished Kurdistanis are an integral part of our collective talent pool. We are proud of them, and we want them to play prominent roles in building our nation,” Barzani said adding “our aim as the Board of Trustees is to create an environment that welcomes our people home and gives them a chance in developing our society.”

Barzani also indicated that within the government “lifting our standards across the board has been part of our cabinet agenda,” and that the cabinet supported the creation of a national accreditation body - the first in the country, “to improve quality assurance; assess our education standards at all levels and establish a culture of continuous improvement.”

“Let me use this stage tonight to clearly state our goal; we aim to become a Knowledge Nation, a place where ideas, innovation, hard work and enterprise help transform our society and shape the destinies of our people,” Barzani said.

Barzani revealed that “we, as a government, need your help. We want young talented graduates to help us build Kurdistan and create workplaces that implement the professional standards you have seen first-hand at university.”

Shedding light on the progress made in the Kurdistan Region since the beginning of the cabinet in 2019, Barzani indicated that “we have made huge strides in slashing red tape and creating business-friendly environments. We have introduced efficiencies to our public sector that have freed up capital for investments in entrepreneurship and essential public works.”

The Prime Minister in an encouraging word to the graduates advised them to:

- Uphold the highest ethical standards

- Always remember your home and identity

- Give back to the nation when circumstances allow

- Fight for economic prosperity here at home and beyond

- Respect the land; be mindful of sustainability and the preciousness of the God-given planet

- Apply the principles of democracy, justice, and equality to your own lives

In conclusion, Prime Minister Barzani thanked the attendees and “the Peshmerga and security forces, whose bravery and sacrifice create such happy occasions. But also, keep learning and growing as education doesn’t end with a bachelor’s degree.”

The AUK was founded in 2014 as a non-profit, special status institution of higher learning and aims “to shape the next generation of leaders through its curriculum and exceptional faculty.” Its first batch of graduates completed their degrees in 2019.

Edited by NA