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October 10, 2007

Brazilian Medical School Honors SGI President

On October 10, 2007, Faculdade Ingá (Uningá), a medical school in Maringá, Paraná State, Brazil, conferred its first honorary professorship upon SGI President Daisaku Ikeda in recognition of his contributions to the promotion of the dignity of life, human rights, education, culture and peace. The conferral ceremony was held at the Soka University Central Tower in Hachioji, Tokyo.

The Brazilian delegation included members of an economic and friendship mission from Paraná State headed by Brazil-Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Antonio Ueno. Uningá Professor Francisco Tan, a member of the mission, introduced a congratulatory message from Uningá Director-General Ricardo Benedito de Oliveira and then entrusted the diploma and academic robe to SGI Vice President Hiromasa Ikeda, who accepted it on his father's behalf.

In 1998, Professor Tan first met Mr. Ikeda as a faculty member of the University of North Paraná when that university bestowed an honorary doctorate upon the SGI leader. Professor Tan said he was impressed by Mr. Ikeda's tireless dedication to building a world of peace and happiness for all people. Professor Tan joined the faculty of Uningá three years ago.

Vice President Ikeda spoke about the history of bilateral friendship which began with Japanese immigration to Brazil, and expressed his hope that young successors would continue to broaden and deepen that relationship. He read a message from Mr. Ikeda, in which the SGI leader expressed his heartfelt appreciation for the honor.

Also among the delegates attending the ceremony were State Deputy Teruo Kato and City of Londrina Vice Mayor Luís Fernando Pinto Dias. Mr. Dias presented a letter to Mr. Ikeda from Londrina Mayor Nedson Luiz Micheleti, inviting him to attend the city's centennial celebrations slated for 2008, commemorating the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants to Londrina.

At Uningá, some 2,500 undergraduates are enrolled in the faculties of medicine, dentistry and nursing, and 2,000 students study state-of-the-art medical technologies at its graduate school.

[Adapted from an article in the October 11, 2007, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]