Curtin University has recognised Her Excellency Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor, wife of the Malaysian Prime Minister for her dedication to education, particularly early childhood education, by awarding her an Honorary Doctorate of Letters.
HE Datin Sri Rosmah was presented with the Honorary Doctorate before 600 graduating students from the Faculty of Humanities and the Centre for Aboriginal Studies, on Saturday 11 February at the University’s Bentley Campus in Perth, Western Australia.
Educated in Malaysia and the United States, HE Datin Sri Rosmah holds bachelor and master degrees in sociology and anthropology, and worked in banking and business development before marrying The Hon. Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak, the Prime Minister of Malaysia since 2009, in 1987.
She has devoted herself to community life, becoming the driving force behind the Permata project, which focuses on early childhood education and care for Malaysian children aged under five.
As a result of her involvement, there are more than 600 Permata centres in Malaysia, and the program now extends to centres for talented and gifted children with special academic and musical abilities, and to children with special acumen in spiritual matters.
HE Datin Sri Rosmah said she was honoured to accept the Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Curtin.
“To receive this award from a university that has a national and international reputation for its high quality teaching and research is an honour,” she said.
“Education is very important because it lays a strong foundation in the development of children, communities and nations.
“It can transform lives and provides a base for national growth, productivity, social cohesion and peace.”
Curtin Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Jeanette Hacket said HE Datin Sri Rosmah’s work in education reflected one of Curtin’s key aims of providing equal access to higher education for disadvantaged groups, such as students of Indigenous descent or those from rural or isolated areas.
“HE Datin Sri Rosmah is helping to transform the lives of Malaysian children through her work and has laid strong foundations that enable communities to further develop and prosper,” Professor Hacket said.
“She has a long association with Curtin University, having been present at the inauguration of the University’s campus in Miri, Malaysia in 1999.”
Curtin University graduation ceremonies are held throughout the year locally, nationally and internationally.
More than 3,500 students will graduate from seven ceremonies held at Curtin’s Bentley Campus this month.