Founder of Wikipedia honoured at Glasgow Caledonian University graduation ceremony

THE founder of Wikipedia was among a group of high achievers as Glasgow graduates received their degrees.

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Broadcaster Gavin Esler and Wikipaedia founder Jimmy Wales were among the graduates at GCU
Broadcaster Gavin Esler and Wikipaedia founder Jimmy Wales were among the graduates at GCU

Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) honoured Jimmy Wales, the American founder of the internet encyclopedia, at its summer graduation ceremony.

Also among the 2300 graduands at the ceremony in the Clyde Auditorium were broadcaster Gavin Esler and Khalid Abdulrahim, founder and chairman of the KAR Group.

GCU Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies said: "The university is privileged to welcome such distinguished Honorary Graduates into our ­extended academic community.

"Each Honorary Graduate brings a wealth of professional experience coupled with a strong commitment to serve the common good in public life."

Mr Wales received his Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters from Nobel Laureate and international anti-poverty campaigner, GCU Chancellor Professor Muhammad Yunus. The award was in recognition of his outstanding achievement within the field of internet entrepreneurship.

Wikipedia, the online encyclo­pedia, was founded in 2001.

Mr Wales went on to found other wiki-related organisations, including the charitable Wikimedia Foundation, and the for-profit company Wikia, Inc.

The wiki sites are among the top five most visited sites on the web.

More than 2300 students graduated from GCU's three academic schools - the School of Engineering and Built Environment, ­Glasgow School for Business and Society and the School of Health and Life Sciences.

Ceremonies were held yesterday and today in the Clyde Auditorium.

Honorary degrees were also awarded to five other outstanding figures from the worlds of business, media, philanthropy and academia.

Broadcaster, journalist and ­author Mr Esler was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters in recognition of his outstanding achievement, contribution and extensive experience within journalism and his distinction in the field of literature.

Mr Abdulrahim, founder and chairman of the KAR Group, was given an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Engineering, in recognition of his outstanding achievement, contribution and extensive ­experience within the construction industry in Bahrain and internationally.

President Stephen Friedman, of Pace University in New York, gained an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws in recognition of his distinction in the field of higher education administration and his outstanding achievement, contribution and extensive experience within the legal sector.

And Professor Eva Haller, GCU Honorary Professor and Magnusson Fellow, and Dr Yoel Haller were each awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters in recognition of their outstanding achievements and contributions to philanthropy and social activism.

catriona.stewart@ eveningtimes.co.uk

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