Northwestern University in Qatar is set to graduate its first journalism and communication class on May 9 amid a host of events for students, parents, international guests and visitors. In the graduation ceremony, 36 students will receive Bachelor of Science degrees in journalism or communication, awarded by Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism and School of Communication. "Northwestern University in Qatar's first graduation is a milestone event for Qatar," Shaikha Hind Bint Hamad Al Thani, director of the Emir's Office and a member of NU-Q's Joint Advisory Board, said. "A thriving media industry is crucial to a knowledge-based economy of the future, and this field of graduates is poised to make a powerful mark. I look to these fresh graduates to work diligently to translate their education into meaningful contributions to our nation's development, driving our media industries to new horizons of progress and freedom."
The graduation speaker will be Rami Khouri, the director of the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at the American University in Beirut, a columnist for the Beirut-based Daily Star, and a member of the NU-Q Joint Advisory Board since 2010.
Northwestern University will host a series of events for students, parents, international guests and visitors from Northwestern's Evanston campus, and faculty and staff at NU-Q to celebrate the inaugural graduation.
On May 5, NU-Q students will kick off the weeklong celebration with a senior retreat. A formal dinner on May 6 will give seniors a chance to reflect on their four years at Northwestern University in Qatar.
On May 7, senior students will showcase their best works for international guests and Northwestern Trustees. The students will choose one faculty member from the communication and journalism programs to deliver a last lecture as part of a community day that will also include a senior "Food for Thought" session where each student will impart their "pearls of wisdom" to remaining NU-Q classes.
An Awards Recognition lunch, hosted by Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro, will be held on May 8. Five student awards -the Journalism Award, Communication Award, Liberal Arts Award, Student Leader Award, and Dean's Award -will be given out at the lunch, where the President will also recognize NU-Q's Latin honor students. Benazir Karim, the senior valedictorian, will give a speech.
On the same day, NU-Q will join the other Education City universities at the Qatar Foundation-hosted Senior Convocation, before the university's inaugural commencement ceremony the following day.
In a final celebration of their graduation, the NU-Q seniors will travel to Evanston, Illinois in mid-June to take part in the graduation ceremonies at Northwestern University's home campus. There they will receive their official diploma alongside other Northwestern graduates.