media release

Event: UBC and SFU award honorary degrees to His Highness the Aga Khan

October 17, 2018

Wan Yee Lok, SFU Communications & Marketing, 778.782.3210,

The University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University are each awarding an honorary doctorate of laws degree to His Highness the Aga Khan in a joint conferral ceremony—a first for both universities.

Media who wish to attend the ceremony are asked to apply for accreditation before 12 p.m. PT (noon) on Thursday, Oct. 18. Please contact to apply.

Note to assignment editors: B-roll and photos of the ceremony will be available here immediately following the event. The ceremony will also be live-streamed here.

Date/Time: Friday, Oct. 19, 3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

The university presidents are available for brief interviews at 2:15 p.m.

Location: Venue will be disclosed upon approval of accreditation.

Details: His Highness the Aga Khan will be conferred honorary degrees from UBC and SFU in recognition of his lifelong service to humanity, and the intersections of his work at both universities.

The Aga Khan is the 49th hereditary Imam (spiritual leader) of the Shia Ismaili Muslim community. Inspired by the Islamic ethic of compassion, and the responsibility to help those less fortunate, His Highness founded the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), a global network of development agencies active in over 30 developing countries and employing some 80,000 people, and working for the common good of all citizens, regardless of their gender, origin or religion. Today the AKDN invests close to $1 billion a year for non-profit social and cultural development activities around the world to addresses the needs of these vulnerable populations.

The Aga Khan has a longstanding relationship with Canada going back over 40 years, and working closely with Canadian governments and organizations on initiatives that promote inclusive, sustainable development and improve quality of life. For over 60 years, His Highness has been one of the world’s leading advocates of a pluralist, cosmopolitan ethic, one that embraces human diversity as an opportunity and as an antidote to social fragmentation and division.


  • UBC President and Vice-Chancellor Santa J. Ono
  • SFU President and Vice-Chancellor Andrew Petter
  • Aga Khan University President Firoz Rasul

For more information:

The Aga Khan awarded with honorary degrees from UBC and SFU (Sept. 24, 2018 media release)

The Aga Khan Development Network: His Highness’ visit to Canada

Photos and b-roll video available here following the ceremony.


<p><a href="/content/sfu/sfunews/comment_guidelines.html?keepThis=true&amp;TB_iframe=true&amp;height=700&amp;width=700" class="thickbox">Comment Guidelines</a><br>