Rutgers to honor Dalai Lama with degree


New Jersey, USA -- Rutgers University will award an honorary degree to the Dalai Lama when the Tibetan Buddhist leader visits the New Brunswick campus Sept. 25, officials announced Thursday.

The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, will deliver a public lecture on peace during his visit. The Dalai Lama won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 for his continuing efforts to find a non-violent solution to the conflicts between Tibet and China.

The Dalai Lama was enthroned at the age of 5 and called upon to assume full political leadership of Tibet at age 15. In 1959, following the crushed Tibetan National Uprising, he sought asylum in India, where he works to preserve the Tibetan language, religion and culture within the refugee community.

As an international advocate for peace and religious understanding, the Dalai Lama has traveled extensively, drawing the attention of world leaders to issues of fundamental human rights and democratic freedom. Of his tireless dedication to non-violence, the Nobel committee noted, "He has advocated peaceful solutions based upon tolerance and mutual respect in order to preserve the historical and cultural heritage of his people."

Rutgers President Richard McCormick said it is hoped the visit will foster
"exceptional university-wide dialogue" on important issues.