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Cox receives honorary degree from Halifax university

Former premier Paula Cox receives an honorary degree from Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax (Photograph supplied)

Former premier Paula Cox was honoured in Canada for barrier-breaking work in public service.

Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax bestowed Ms Cox with a degree of Doctor of Humane Letters during the school’s Spring Commencement.

In a speech to graduates last week, Ms Cox said many people around the world felt uncertain and fearful in the midst of a “global election season”.

She urged attendees to be innovative, unwavering and principled.

“We are living through a period of grave crisis,” Ms Cox said. “We live at a time when what is up seems down and what is down seems up.

“And we live when there is still much injustice. But through our collective efforts we can move from panic to purpose, from chaos to calm, from turbulence to triumph.”

Ms Cox, who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from McGill University and a postgraduate Diploma in International Law from Manchester University, was elected to office in Bermuda in 1996.

In 1998 she was re-elected and subsequently named as the Progressive Labour Party’s first Minister of Labour, Home Affairs and Public Safety before tackling other roles including Minister of Education and Development and Minister of Finance.

She became the Premier of Bermuda in October 2010 and served in that role until the party was defeated in the 2012 General Election.

The university noted that Ms Cox was named the “Most Effective Politician” in the Best of Bermuda Awards in 2001, 2003 and 2006, is the chairwoman of the African Diaspora Consortium and serves on the advisory board of the International Black Women’s Public Policy Institute.

Ms Cox was honoured alongside Michelle Douglas, a Canadian activist who was discharged from the Canadian military in 1989 because of her sexual orientation.

Milena Pimental, a student from Bermuda who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Child and Youth Study, was among recipients of the President’s Prize.

A statement from Mount Saint Vincent said the recognition was given to “graduates whose generosity, energy and commitment enrich the university”.

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Published May 20, 2024 at 11:35 am (Updated May 20, 2024 at 6:00 pm)

Cox receives honorary degree from Halifax university

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