24th Aug, 2011

National Orientation Program 2011

After the closing ceremony His Majesty interacts with graduates before a group photograph

Speaking to 1,698 university graduates yesterday in Thimphu, His Majesty the King encouraged them to set great hopes and aspirations, and be ready to face challenges and obstacles.

“Your hope and aspirations I will adopt, make it my own, and try to fulfill it. This is all about nation building,” His Majesty said at the closing of the 12-day national graduate orientation programme.

His Majesty said there is no merit for an individual or a nation to avoid or hide from challenges. “As we move forward into uncharted water, we must find solutions to challenges with foresight, wisdom and tact,” His Majesty said.

His Majesty reminded the graduates not to remain complacent. “These days there are many graduates and those of you who feel that just because you are a graduate, everything will happen to you, I must warn you that you will be left behind,” His Majesty said.

“If you do not have the desire to learn, work hard and show determination, you will be left behind or at best outdated.”

His Majesty also reminded the graduates that fundamental to the strength and beauty of our nation is cultural heritage – traditions and customs – the bond between children and their parents, teachers and elders, the trust and faith among friends, neighbours and the community.

“These are unwritten and unspoken values passed from generation to generation for centuries. These values are inherent in all of us. Yet, it takes proper reflection to truly understand and nurture them in this modern world,” His Majesty said. “These age-old values that we inherit from one generation and pass on to the next will be fundamental to our success.”

His Majesty also spoke on the Drilam chhoesum–cultural traditions of etiquette. “Many educated Bhutanese today might say that these are the little things we do, such as lowering our heads, or our kabneys and standing in the presence of higher authorities. That is not true. It is neither subservience nor the currying of favour that some people have reduced it to be. As you go forward in life, you will, as individuals, need two things more than anything else – education and character,” His Majesty said, adding, “If you place all your hopes for your future in the education you have, it is not enough.”

His Majesty also reminded the graduates to balance their work with love and compassion and lay the foundation of their life on emotional and psychological intelligence.

The graduates, His Majesty said, also have the responsibility to serve the country. “You cannot expect anyone to do it for you. If not us, then who? If not this time, then when? If not for these reasons, then what? We have an additional responsibility to protect and serve our country.” Source: Kuenselonline

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