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Honorary doctor Denis Mukwege visits USN

Portrait of Dr. Denis Mukwege in front of the lectern
VISITING USN: Dr. Denis Mukwege is an honorary doctorate at University of South-Eastern Norway. He visits campus Drammen and campus Kongsberg in April. (Photo: Alexandros Michailidis/Shutterstock.com)

Dr. Denis Mukwege is visiting University of South-Eastern Norway for the first time after he was awarded an honorary doctorate.

Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Denis Mukwege from Congo was appointed an honorary doctor at University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) last year. In April this year, he will physically receive the diploma during the solemn doctoral graduation ceremony.  

Dr. Mukwege will participate in both the celebration of this year’s new doctors at campus Kongsberg and as a speaker at a major health conference at campus Drammen.

"We are proud and delighted that Denis Mukwege accepted the appointment as an honorary doctor at USN, and we look forward to meeting him and celebrating this year’s new doctors together with him", says Rector Pia Cecilie Bing-Jonsson. 

Celebrating with new doctors  

On March 8th – International Women’s Day – the Board of USN decided to make Dr. Denis Mukwege of Congo’s Panzi Hospital USN’s first honorary doctor. At that time, he could not travel to Norway due to the political situation in his home country.

On April 24 and 25 this year, Dr. Mukwege will visit USN. On Wednesday, he will participate in the Women’s Health Conference in Drammen, where he will deliver a lecture on the prevention and treatment of cervical cancer and violence against women. On Thursday, he will receive the honorary diploma during the doctoral graduation ceremony in Kongsberg. 

This ceremony is a celebration of the university’s newly graduated doctors, including honorary doctors. They receive their diplomas with academic solemnity. 

Collaborates with USN

The term honorary doctorate is used to describe an individual who is awarded a doctoral title without having defended a thesis in a public defense (disputation). Instead, it is bestowed as an honorary distinction by a university.

Dr. Denis Mukwege, a specialist in gynecology, has fought against sexual violence used as a weapon in war and armed conflicts. His scientific work also encompasses various global health issues. In 2018, he was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize with human rights activist Nadia Murad.

At USN, Dr. Mukwege has had ongoing professional collaboration with the research group Biomedical and Biomedical Microelectromechanical Systems (BioMEMS) at the Department of Microsystems. This research area include diagnostic technology and tests for various diseases.

Additionally, he has collaborated with the professional academic midwifery environment at the Department of Nursing and Health Sciences on reproductive women’s health.