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Kotelawala Defence University Convocation Produces 90 More Military Graduates

The annual Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU) Convocation - 2011 for conferment of Bachelor and Master degrees on 90 military officers, including 4 foreign cadets, took place Tuesday (22) evening at Temple Trees with HE the President Mahinda Rajapaksa gracing the occasion as the Chief Guest.

A total of 51 Army, 23 Navy,12 Air Force Cadet Officers and 4 foreign graduands (3 from Maldives and 1 from Nepal) read for those degrees under the Intake 25 at KDU and received graduation in Master of Science (Defence Studies) and Bachelor of Science (Defence Studies).

Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary Defence and Urban Development, Chief of Defence Staff, Tri-service Commanders and a gathering of senior military officers and scholars attended the ceremony as distinguished invitees.

KDU Chancellor General (Retd) R.D. S. Daluwatte received the Chief Guest, President Mahinda Rajapaksa who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, and respectfully ushered him to his seat after taking him in a procession, made up of KDU academic staff and graduands in keeping with university traditions.
The convocation commenced with the official declaration of the opening of the conferment soon after the national and university anthems rent the air.

As the ceremony was gathering momentum, Major General Milinda Peiris, Vice Chancellor afterwards announced the names of graduands as the Deans of Faculties, Director, Institute of Post Graduate Studies and Director of Academic Studies in turn presented the graduands to the Chancellor for conferment.

The climax of the day’s event reached when HE the President Rajapaksa on the invitation of the KDU Chancellor, awarded the trophies to the graduates who did exceptionally well in different disciplines, including Engineering, Management and Technical Science, Academic Studies, Military Studies, Sports, etc. In addition, Best students of the Army, Navy and Air Force, Best student in both MSc and BSc degree courses received their accolades from the President Rajapaksa during the august assembly.  

The Sword of Honour of the Intake 25 was awarded to Lieutenant N.K.H. Nehinna of Sri Lanka Army. Lieutenant Nehinna showed her colours by being the Best Student Officer of the Army and the one who received the honours by being the Best Overall performance in academic studies. She received her honours from the President.

Wing Commander C.J. Hettiarachchi of Sri Lanka Air Force received the award for the Best overall performance in Master of Science (Defence Studies) degree course while Squadron Leader A.J.R. Kurivita Arachchi of Sri Lanka Air Force, accepted the award for the Best overall performance in Bachelor of Science (Defence Studies) stream.

President Rajapaksa after awarding the trophies addressed the gathering. Before his exit, President Rajapaksa, giving a symbolic memory to the occasion sat together with graduates for a group photograph at their request.

With the KDU Chancellor declaring the convocation closed, the national anthem brought the proceedings to a formal end.

Prof G.L Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, several past Commanders, former Chancellors and Vice Chancellors, senior tri-service officers, parents, well-wishers and invitees were present at the occasion.