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President Higgins to be conferred with honorary doctorate

President Michael D Higgins is being conferred with an honorary doctorate from the University of Manchester, which he attended as a postgraduate student more than 50 years ago.

He will also be making an inaugural lecture in a new series that will run for the next five years.

The President’s visit coincides with the tenth anniversary of his state visit to the United Kingdom in April 2014 and with the 200th anniversary of the establishment of the University of Manchester in 1824.

President Higgins will be conferred with the Degree of Doctor of Letters honoris causa by the Chancellor of the University of Manchester, Nazir Afzal, in recognition of his contributions to literature and public life.

The conferral ceremony will take place at the Whitworth Art Gallery, which forms part of the university.

President Higgins studied at the University of Manchester as a postgraduate from 1968 to 1971.

The honorary doctorate joins other such awards which the President has received from universities across a number of continents.

President Higgins will tomorrow deliver the inaugural lecture in a new annual series of lectures called the John Kennedy series.

His lecture will be entitled: ‘Of the consciousness our times need in responding to interacting crises and the role of Universities as spaces of discourse in facilitating it.’

The President will be meeting with a number of contacts in universities and other institutions, including those he previously worked with on academic projects.

He will also meet with members of the Irish community who have been invited to attend the public lecture.

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