Dr Abedian’s 16-year Griffith connection stems from his passion for education and a commitment to creating a brighter future, something he has achieved through his extensive philanthropic work at the University and beyond.
Vice Chancellor and President Professor Ian O’Connor AC said Dr Abedian had played a crucial role in the development of the Gold Coast and was a dedicated philanthropist.
“…his belief in the power of education is matched by the generosity that continues to change people’s lives and society forever,” he said.
In 2016, the Sunland Group founder and his wife, Anne launched the Abedian Foundation Griffith Futures Scholarships Program for students excelling in their studies despite personal or financial hardships.
Over 6 years, the program will provide 360 scholarships to students and provides opportunities for students to meet with Dr Abedian, who takes an active interest in their progress.
Dr Abedian addressed graduates at the ceremony after Professor O’Connor had presented him with his Honorary Doctorate.
“…You are the only writer of your future,” Dr Abedian said.
“…Many people will come into your life, some will hurt you, some will challenge you but through crisis victory will emerge, as long as you focus on what is right for humanity and what you do for the betterment of society.”
It has been a busy year for Dr Abedian who was also named the 2018 Queensland Community Foundation Higher Education Philanthropist of the Year in June.
The award recognised his extensive philanthropic work through the Abedian Foundation, which has supported countless people, educational facilities, charities and not-for-profit organisations.
“The earth is but one country and mankind its citizen,” Dr Abedian said.
“…You are my friend the agent of change, every single one of you have a voice, use this voice for the betterment of humanity, use it for the oneness of mankind, use it for equality of man and woman, use it for elimination of all kind of prejudice, use it for education of all children….”