Puhe kunniatohtorille, FT Mari-Liisa Varila
Distinguished doctores honoris causa, dear guests.

Today we celebrate together with our twelve new honorary doctors, invited by the seven faculties of the University of Turku. The honorary doctorate is a degree awarded to individuals who have conducted outstanding work in their field, and who have significantly contributed to the society and to our university.

This year, we are celebarating Finland’s one-hundreth birthday. In its current form, the University of Turku was founded in 1920. The first doctoral promotion at the University of Turku that was organised by all faculties took place exactly ninety years ago, in 1927. However, the roots of the academic community in Turku lie even deeper. Already in the thirteenth century, students from Turku attended European universities, and in 1640, the Swedish queen Christina initiated the founding of a university in Turku. We still find mobility and international collaboration extremely important!

Today, our community has grown by twelve new honorary doctors from different fields of society and academia; from Finland and from all over the world. Distinguished honorary doctors, in sharing your time and your knowledge with our academic community, you have given us an immensely valuable gift. Collaboration between people and between institutions is the key to a better tomorrow. Your insight and expertise guide us on our way, inspiring us to pursue our dreams and our goals. Thank you for showing us the way forward.

Dear guests – please join me in raising a toast to the distinguished honorary doctors. Here’s to a long life and a merry one!
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