Beirut Arab University graduated its 55th class of 1703 Graduates and Postgraduates distributed among ten faculties during its Grand Annual Ceremony held in Debbieh Campus. The ceremony included awarding an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Medicine to Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub, Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery, and was marked with the launch of the first batch of Petroleum Engineering Graduates. The event was attended by BAU Academic and Administrative members, Waqf El Bir wal Ihsan President and Board of Trustees, graduates’ families, Minister of Environment Tarek El-Khatib representing President Michel Aoun, MP Ibrahim Azar representing Speaker of the Parliament of Lebanon Nabih Berri, MP Mohammad Hajjar representing HE the President of the Council of Ministers Mr. Saad Hariri, Dr. Ammar Houri representing HE Fouad Sanioura, MP Rola Al-Tabesh Jaroudi in addition to a number of ambassadors of Arab and foreign countries and representatives of the security services as well as a large crowd of prominent security, municipality, educational and media figures. The ceremony began after the entry of the processions of graduates and of the President with the Lebanese National Anthem and BAU Anthem, followed by the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran by Sheikh Hasan Merheb. Ms. Zina Ariss, Director of Public Relations Administration, presented the event addressing the graduates, "We entrust you with illuminating the path of glory with your knowledge, safeguarding the homeland and its institutions, and affirming that dignity and transparency are the best ways to reach the truth.” The graduation speech was delivered by Graduate Izdihar Baasiri from the Faculty of Medicine, who, with deep emotions, recalled the years of hard work and study, bidding farewell to the years that "included a lot of events mixed with moments of sadness and joy, great diligence and fun, moments that will always be stamped in our memories as long as we are alive,” and wondering “how we can forget these memorable moments which are scattered in every corner of this institution.” In his speech, President El-Adawi considered the graduation ceremony an esteemed event that combines the joy of success and the greatness of achievement as BAU has always been keen on pursuing, nurturing, embracing and honouring excellence since its establishment because it believes that the real change that the Arab world awaits on all levels is based on scientific, moral, and professional excellence only. President El-Adawi stressed BAU’s mission to spread education in the Arab society according to international quality standards through “our relentless and permanent quest to identify the global changes and developments in the world of higher education.” He also stressed the need to keep up with the changing aspirations of the students and the needs of the labour market in various modern fields, noting that this year BAU graduates its first batch of Petroleum Engineering students in Lebanon. El-Adawi concluded with announcing that an Honorary Doctorate in Medicine will be bestowed upon the distinguished Surgeon Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub in recognition of his outstanding efforts and scientific and humanitarian contributions, and conferred the certificate to him on behalf of BAU. Professor Sir Magdy Yacoub thanked Lebanon for its relentless honoring and appreciation of the scholars, highlighting BAU’s significance as an important scientific institution that mingles science and humanities. He considered science crucial in our quest for the truth and requested the graduates to guard their homeland and their own world with science which they are in great need of, wishing them excellence on their future journeys. Afterwards, certificates were distributed on the graduates including the Jamal Abdel Nasser Award for Academic Excellence, the Issam Houri Award for the highest GPA in Accounting, the Assem Salam Award in Architectural Engineering, the MArch Engineering Award, the Ghanem Shammaa Award as well as those recognised on the Honor List. The ceremony ended with fireworks that ignited the skies, marking the admission of the 55th batch to the convoy of BAU graduates to join their colleagues who graduated from Tripoli Campus last week.