The University of West Attica (UNIWA) honored Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew by declaring him an Honorary Doctor at a recent event in Athens.
The Honorary Doctorate was given by the Department of Conservation of Antiquities and Works of Art of the School of Applied Arts and Culture.
The ceremony took place, in the presence of the Minister of Education, Religion and Sports, Kyriakos Pierrakakis and the Deputy Minister of Education, Religion and Sports Zettas M. Makris, on Wednesday, October 11, at the historical site of the Athenian Association, in Plaka.
Welcoming Bartholomew, Professor Panagiotis E. Kaldis, Rector of UNIWA, noted that this highest academic distinction is offered to a living legend of spirituality, of Christian orthodoxy, who works tirelessly for the defense of human rights and the environment.
The Dean of the UNIWA Department of Applied Arts and Culture, Professor Georgios Fakorellis, in his address stated that the awarded title is a recognition of Barthlomew’s outstanding contribution to culture, art, and the preservation of the spiritual heritage of Byzantium.
Academics at the University of West Attica praise Bartholomew
The President of the Department of Conservation of Antiquities and Works of Art, Professor Stamatios X. Boyatzis praised the Ecumenical Patriarch’s contribution to the preservation of both spiritual and material heritage, as well as his actions against the disastrous effects of climate change.
The work of the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew was presented at length by the professor of the Department of Conservation of Antiquities and Works of Art, Stefania Chlouveraki, who noted that the honor coincides with the celebration of the European Day for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage.
She added that the Ecumenical Patriarch works tirelessly for the preservation and protection of the immovable and movable monuments of the Byzantine and Post-Byzantine periods.
Bartholomew, noted that he accepts with gratitude and joy the awarding of the honor, “being aware that everything is a gift from above.”
He thanked Chlouveraki, in particular, for her “admirable” work in preserving the historical icon of Panagia Pammakaristos, the 12th-century icon that symbolizes Byzantium and Greek Orthodoxy.
The restored icon, which was made possible by the financial assistance of sponsors, headed by Panagiotis Laskaridis, was handed over to the Ecumenical Patriarchate in a special ceremony held in June 2023.
University of West Attica fastest-growing university in Greece
The University of West Attica was established in 2018 as a result of the merger of the Technological Educational Institute of Athens and the Technological Educational Institute of Piraeus.
The National School of Public Health also joined the newly established institution in 2019 which now comprises 6 Schools and 27 Departments covering a wide range of modern Science, including Social, Administrative and Economic Sciences, Health and Food Sciences, Engineering, and Art Studies.
Today, it is the third largest university in Greece (after the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens), and is considered the fastest-growing university in the country and one of the fastest-growing universities in Southeastern Europe.