|Engineering College - Graduation|
Jul. 17, 1958
|... The existence from ancient times of marvels of construction --|
among which Ethiopia proudly numbers the monuments at Axum, the
remarkable rock churches and other engineering wonders -- attest to the
long history of the profession ...
|It gives Us great pleasure to be present here today to award degrees to the first graduates of this
College of Engineering which We inaugurated with such high hopes but a few short years ago. This
first graduation ceremony marks another step towards the fulfilment of the goal which we have set
for Ourselves and for Our country in Our overall programme for the development of Ethiopia to
which We have so long devoted Ourselves.
When We observe the tangible results produced by Our programme of education, to which We
have dedicated the major portion of Our time and efforts, it helps Us to bear lightly the burden of
Our labours, and provide for Us and for you as well an occasion for legitimate pride.
Although the first institution where men received formal training in engineering was established
only a little over two hundred years ago, the science of engineering is one of the world's oldest.
The existence from ancient times of marvels of construction -- among which Ethiopia proudly
numbers the monuments at Axum, the remarkable rock churches and other engineering wonders --
attests to the long history of the profession. Even in Our day, engineers are seen constantly
adopting and adapting to their current needs the techniques developed in those remote times, thus
fusing the ancient and the modern, the old and the new. As you advance in your profession, the
value of thus combining ancient and modern skills will become apparent to you.
Now that your formal education is over, you graduates like engineering graduates the world over,
will have to apprentice yourselves to senior engineers and acquire the necessary practical
experience which alone can complete the training which you have received at this College.
The degree which you receive today testifies to your growth in knowledge and training. But the
measure of your growth in real partisanship remains to be revealed in the work which awaits you
in your future careers. Your success in your profession will not depend on your possession of an
engineering degree; it is rather to be judged by the service you render in future and by the tangible
results of your labours. Having passed the academic test posed by this College, you now move on
to face the more arduous tests posed by life. And the only way to face these tests successfully is to
be spiritually prepared for them.
Do not make the mistake of assuming that having taken your engineering degree you can put
training and study behind you, and can afford to neglect the acquisition of further knowledge and
skill. Man's education never stops, and in a profession as complex and difficult as yours, you must
strive ceaselessly to put into practice your theoretical knowledge, and to keep yourselves abreast
of new technical developments. If the product of your labours is not commensurate with the
advantages you have received from eduction, your efforts thus far will be judged futile and
worthless. Throughout your life, your mettle will be tested by the work you do, and your
reputation will depend on the outcome of this test.
It is, therefore, your duty to exercise life-long vigilance to ensure that the fruits of your labours are
worthy of the efforts spent on your education. If you, whose minds have been matured by
education and to whom the torch of knowledge has been handed, fail to make a significant
contribution to the welfare of your country, your responsibility shall be great indeed.
In order faithfully to discharge this heavy responsibility, you must be men who love your nation
and people, men of integrity and clear conscience, combining patience and humility. Be
unswerving in your loyalty to your country which has given you so much and to which so much is
due. Place your faith and trust in Almighty God; for, without His assistance and guidance, man is
but a weak and puny creature.
|Haile Selassie the First - July 17, 1958|