On Friday, July 19, 1957, at the fourth
Commencement Exercises at the, University
College His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I
made the following speech:
"We feel much satisfaction at the reports submitted
by the Chairman of the University College, and by the
President of the College, on the academic, cultural
and physical progress achieved, in particular during
this academic year; moreover, when We observe the
growing number of graduates produced by Our University
College, we are happy to find that Our hopes are far
on the way to being realised.
An Institute of Higher Education has to set a noble
pattern for a nation, and indeed, proceeding as you are
under proper guidance, you are setting an example
of unity and progress.
We have declared on various occasions that lack of
unity is harmful to a country and of benefit to others.
This you have understood. We are happy to see how
far you have striven towards a deeper mutual understanding.
Knowledge paves the way to love, and love in its
turn fosters understanding, and leads one along the
path of great common achievements for one's country.
Your are enjoying the fruits of mutual esteem and
cooperation, both among yourselves and between the
teaching staff and student body, thus promoting an
atmosphere favourable to academic development and to
the growth of personality. These words of Ours should
be an incentive to you, as well as a reward. For in this
way are We clearly realising a still higher purpose.
Junior students took up to their seniors, while the
community at large follows your daily life with keen
interest, and thus learns from you. By your efforts
to understand one another, to express your sincere if
divergent opinions; to study the view points of others, and
to attain closer cooperation in a spirit of mutual respect,
you are setting a fine example, While you grow up
together as students in your own land, preparing yourselves
to serve the nation without abandoning the best of its
traditions, you are taking part in your own fashion, in
the efforts to render your homeland prosperous and
secure, and to ensure that her greatness persists and
The aim of higher education is to prepare an elite
that sets an ideal of achievement through personal and
professional values. This aim cannot be reached except
by following the Country's spiritual traditions as well as
certain basic conditions.
We declared in 1947 that a true Ethiopian education
should foster not only the material and practical but
also the spiritual training of youth. Later in the same
year we laid stress on the two-fold duty of educators:
"To teach the subjects of the curriculum, and at the
Same time, to teach right conduct." We are happy to
see that in Our University College the basic principles of
Our educational policy are being carried out.
Our confidence in the future is great when We see
that here Arts and Sciences are fostered together; that
all students are required to master cultural as well as
practical subjects, and to take account of the social and
spiritual aspects of scientific, economic, juridical and
other specialised fields of knowledge. Specialisation
tends towards diversification and division among
human beings; spiritual and cultural education leads
them back into unity, on the national as well as on the
personal level. These two essential aspects of the true
preparation of young people are respected in Our
University College. We see the fruits in the growing
competence, strength of character and professional
personality of the students.
We are guiding this young University College and
modern Ethiopia on the same principles: while establishing
in Our own times this institution of higher learning.
Speeches delivered by His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie Ist Emperor of Ethiopia on various occasions - page 5 -