Saturday, October 2, 2010

Keynote Address at the Conferment of Certificate and Degree to Graduates of the University of Puthisastra

National Institute of Education, September 29, 2010

- Your Venerable Monks,

- Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Distinguished National and International Guests,

- Dear the Management, Lecturers and Students,

It is my pleasure to be here today to confer certificates and degrees to 373 graduates of the University of Puthisastra. On behalf of the Royal Government of Cambodia and my spouse, I would like to congratulate all the graduates to be awarded with certificates and degrees shortly. This achievement reflects your hard work in the pursuit of capacity development and prosperity for family and the nation. I think this is a very proud and memorable event as it shows that Cambodia is on the accelerated path of building competent and talented human resources for accelerated socio-economic development. Taking this opportunity, I would like to commend the University of Puthisastra for its contribution to the nation’s human resource development effort, more specifically the active contribution and firm commitment from the management, lecturers, and all staffs that make today’s achievement possible. Also in this context, I would like to commend the management, the rector, vice rectors, lecturers, and all staffs of the University of Puthisastra for joining the Royal Government in building human resources, the concrete foundation for socio-economic development and poverty reduction.

Furthermore, I would like to highly appreciate the Puthisastra University for establishing student exchange program to enable Cambodian students to go on study tour and exchange experience with students in United States every years and for providing students scholarship to continue their studies in the Republic of Korea. These allow our Cambodian students rare opportunity to learn from experience and new knowledge of those countries. These qualifications will double our students’ confidence for fearless and equal participation at both national and international forum. In this spirit, I would like to encourage the management of Puthisastra University to carry forward this mission in order to provide students of next batch more opportunity to increase their competitiveness domestically, regionally and internationally.

Indeed, today achievements that the University has made is the reflection of marvelous result from the implementation of the Royal Government’s righteous policy through allowing private sector participation in education and human resource development at all levels in Cambodia. Moreover, this achievement cannot be decoupled from successful implementation of “Win-Win” policy which ensured stability and full peace for people nation-wide and ensure complete national unity. Undeniably, it is full peace and security that enabled the Royal Government of Cambodia to reconstruct and develop the national socio-economy, and especially to be able to protect integrity for the nation and the land like today.

As always, the Royal Government is fully aware that education and training are investments that require huge amount of budget and time and high degree of patience, but will provide intangible result which sometimes take even a generation for the result to be materialized. These mean that education and training, for which we are making effort today, will not only bring result for society of this generation, but also are very potential social capital for sustainable development and continuity of Khmer people of generations to come. That’s why the Royal Government has always considered education and training as priority sector and key determinant for increased productivity and work efficiency with objective to ensure success for sustainable development process in the context that the world is being characterized by strong globalization current at the present.

Moreover, the success of human resource development is primarily based on the capacity of the education institutions in all levels, especially the higher education, which is the place for creative intellectual training, meaning that the knowledge gained from the education of learning, learning to think, learning to do, learning to experience and consider with wisdom and subconscious sense. Along with that, higher education institutions are the places for workshops to orientate students towards development of capacity, skills, confidence, professions and comprehensive networks to be a foundation for each individual’s living, families and society as a whole in the future. In this regard, all higher education institutions have to pay further attention to train our students in both theories and practices, in particular, put the maximum focus on the principles of respecting the rules and regulations, disciplines, orders and good morality and virtues of our Khmer ancestors in order to make sure our students become good citizens of the society after their graduation.

At the same time, in the context of free market economy, the success of human resource development cannot be separated from the active participation from the private sector. With this view, the Royal Government has always considered the private sector as the “locomotive of economic growth”. For the time being, the trend of globalization and liberalization policy on education has been positively affecting Cambodian society. This effect could be clearly shown through the increase of private education institutions in all levels and the strengthening of partnership with both local and foreign partners by promoting the competitiveness for the improvement of quality of products and services. This is the good advantage for the people and the society as a whole. At the same time, although our annual economic growth has been affected by the global economic and financial downturn, the activities of industry, trade and employment generation for the people can still be maintained in a level that is manageable, which make us able to cope with the issue of unemployment with high efficiency as well as mitigating from other problems that may cause adverse impacts to the economy and our society. These successes are truly the advantage gained from the priceless contribution by the growth in education sector and confident partnership between the Royal Government and the private sector.

Along with that, based on the experience of developed countries in the world, prosperity and progress of all sectors primarily depends on knowledge capitals. It plays a key role in solving every confronting problem, and the knowledge capitals also provide education and share other useful knowledge to every person in the society through literature achievements, research articles, books and other research documents; and it also helps preserve our national cultures and find new scientific discoveries. This 21th century is the era of knowledge and information technology, thus knowledge capital has a more important role to play in society. And all this knowledge is a determined factor for increasing the economic potential, competitiveness, and competitive advantages to maximize advantages for our society and homeland.

I am myself optimistic that students graduating today will certainly become core workforce with knowledge, know-how, technical specialization, and talents; in addition, they will be responsible, morally good, and scholars with reasoning power and high conscience; all these factors are qualifications for determining success and dignities of all students in the future.

Taking this opportunity, I would like to ask all the successful students to use their knowledge in the proper and right way and to do useful things for your families and the entire society. All students please remember that all works are valuable; all works, small and big, always have some special features for learning and making merits. In short, talents are the vehicle that will transport you all to the goals you want to achieve. In addition, students are the ones who highly educated and the scholars with reasoning power. Thus, you all should not only rely on finding existing jobs to work in; in contrast you should use your knowledge for new inventions to create opportunities and works for yourself, and other compatriots who do not have opportunities to become educated like you. So you all should develop yourself into an entrepreneur, and an entrepreneur who is successful in the future; this is a request from your families and our society that wish all the students here today work hard to make successful achievements in the future, and to be involved in developing national socio-economy with progress, prosperity and reputation like Angkor ear.

On the other hand, all education and training institutes have to fulfill the need for human resources and markets. Education of students has to link to the practice of real works. In this regard, all education institutes have to pay attention to the studies located in the real work places, factories, enterprises, and have to create some outside classroom activities for students such as study clubs, sport clubs, music clubs and so on, so that students will have learn more about things surrounding them and have extensive knowledge and pleasant spirits in the study. In addition, all education institutes have to focus on education on morality and significance of our cultures and preservation of the national identity. All these factors will strengthen our national conscience and our love for our homeland for our younger generations.

Before ending, I would like to take this opportunity to deeply thank and admire the ministry of education, youths and sports, relevant ministries and institutions, development partners and private sectors that have worked hard together to promote the development of Cambodian human resources.

At the end, I and my wife would May I wish Venerable Monks, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Distinguished National and International Guests, Teachers and all Students, and all Compatriots the four gems of Buddhist blessing: Longevity, Nobility, Health, and Strength.

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