August 24, 2017
Daisaku Ikeda Honored by Valença College of Higher Education in Brazil
Valença College of Higher Education (Centro de Ensino Superior de Valença, CESVA), located in the state of Rio de Janeiro, presented an honorary doctorate to Soka University founder and SGI President Daisaku Ikeda in recognition of his contributions to peace and education worldwide. He was also presented with a commemorative medal from the Dom André Arcoverde Educational Foundation (Fundação Educacional Dom André Arcoverde).
The predecessor to CESVA was established by the Dom André Arcoverde Educational Foundation in 1967 with a primary focus on training educators. It later opened faculties in medicine, dentistry, law and economics, changing its name to Valença College of Higher Education in 1985. With the addition of schools of veterinary medicine, nursing and business management, the institution prepares many capable individuals in the field of medicine. CESVA is one of three educational institutions in the southern region of Rio de Janeiro to offer medical degrees.
The conferral ceremony was held on August 24, 2017, at the Brazil SGI culture center in Saõ Paulo. Rector Antonio Celso Alves Pereira entrusted the honorary degree to Soka Gakkai President Minoru Harada and the SGI delegation visiting from Japan, who accepted it on Mr. Ikeda’s behalf. Also in attendance were Education Department Chair José Rogerio Moura de Almeida Neto and Social Sciences Chair Maria Aparecida Monteiro.
Education Department Chair Almeida, who recommended Mr. Ikeda for the honorary doctorate, concurred with Mr. Ikeda’s conviction that education holds the key for transforming everything, including society and the environment. This resonates with the theme of our university, which is that education is the force for change, said Professor Almeida, and Mr. Ikeda has demonstrated how to put this belief into action.
In an acceptance message, Mr. Ikeda expressed his appreciation to CESVA Rector Pereira and the university for the honor and being able to share it with his fellow SGI members in Brazil. He stated that exactly 70 years ago on August 24, 1947, he had joined Soka Gakkai and commenced a journey for peace, together with second Soka Gakkai President Josei Toda, whom he had taken as his mentor. For this reason, he said, it was an honor and privilege to be able to dedicate this accolade to his teacher on this day. To commemorate the occasion and in tribute to CESVA’s legacy, Mr. Ikeda offered three guidelines to the youth of Brazil and other young global citizens who shoulder the future: be philosophers who create golden waves of dialogue; be leaders in society who remain steadfast in the face of crises; and work together to open new paths in community development.
The certificate of honorary doctorate and special medal are entrusted to Soka Gakkai President Harada
[Adapted from articles in the August 27, 2017 issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]