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President Higgins receives honorary doctorate from Indiana University

The President told graduands to “take the first steps in a new ethical version of economics”.

Image: Joe Giddens

IRISH PRESIDENT MICHAEL D Higgins has been awarded an honorary doctorate by the US university where he spent two years in the 60s.

The President is currently on a tour of the US mid-west and made commencement speeches to 3,000 graduands at Indiana University in front of over 35,000 people. He received a standing ovation, before receiving a doctorate in Humane Letters from the university.

Higgins attended Indiana University in 1966 and 1967, studying for a Masters in Sociology.

He called his time at the university an “interesting time of “discovery and achievement”, telling stories of his time in the US.

I had never been to the United States and I flew in to New York, where I stayed a night in the New York Motor Inn. I remember being woken in the middle of the night by four men waiting to go on night shift from The New York Times who were playing poker in a corner of the room – apparently a regular part of their night. An inadvertent allocation of the poker room to an Irish migrant however created no problem whatsoever.

He told those graduating to have an open mind and explore.

“Be willing to challenge assumptions and to guard against intellectual hubris”, he told them.

He added that they would face problems in the world that they had to respond to.

He said that he hoped they would “take the first steps in a new ethical version of economics”.

Read: Irish primary school students asked to identify President Higgins, hilarity ensues

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