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19/02/2021 - 15:57

A day of celebration

A day of celebration - Available at University of Iceland

Rector's greetings to students and staff on graduation day:

"Dear students and colleagues,

In the busy calendar at the University of Iceland, graduations always stand out, imbued with the splendour of ceremony. Today over 400 candidates will celebrate a major milestone as they are presented with their degree certificates in the University Cinema.

On behalf of the University of Iceland, I would like to express my heartfelt congratulations on your achievement. A degree from the University of Iceland is not only a mark of quality but also the key to your future, to a new job or further studies. Never forget that personal development is founded on knowledge, just as a thriving society is, and the University of Iceland looks to the future of industry.

Graduation also marks a milestone for staff and administrators at the University of Iceland. We have done everything in our power to ensure that a degree from this University is a reliable testament to our candidates' knowledge and ability, wherever their path may take them. And they will benefit from the reputation of the University of Iceland and the strong global network that we have built up. We will always remember our time together and consider all alumni friends of the University.

2021 is an historical year for many reasons. We will commemorate the 110 years that have passed since the University of Iceland was founded by the Alþingi on the birthday of Jón Sigurðsson, hero of the fight for Icelandic independence. But this year is also unique due to the enormous impact of the coronavirus on our society, including the work of the University of Iceland. It has been a testing time for both staff and students, who have united to maintain our high standards in extremely challenging circumstances. It is a testament to the resilience of the candidates that they are now graduating from the University of Iceland in these singular times. They take their next steps with not only new knowledge and a degree under their belts, but also a kind of additional diploma in tenacity and flexibility, which will undoubtedly serve them well in the future.

Due to the restrictions on mass gatherings, instead of a traditional graduation ceremony, candidates are invited to collect their degree certificates today at a set time. This means that unfortunately it will not be possible for family and friends to be there when degree certificates are presented. We will be doing our best to create a ceremonial atmosphere in the University Cinema, although the event will not be the same as usual. We hope to see as many candidates as possible, because this is a day of celebration and accomplishment for us all. Here is my message to the candidates on the occasion of their graduation.

Englilsh subtitles available under settings

Dear students and colleagues,

Bjartsýni, the Icelandic word for optimism, is, like many Icelandic words, both transparent and descriptive. It refers to something that we in Iceland hold very dear: birta, or brightness. Over the last days, we have seen the sun climbing higher in the sky and sometimes there is even a hint of spring in the air. As we all know, the Icelandic weather doesn't always follow the calendar. But we can depend on the brightness, as it grows day by day until the summer solstice. We must let it into our hearts.

Let's be optimistic and look ahead to a bright future, dear candidates, students and colleagues.


Jón Atli Benediktsson, Rector"