USC President C. L. Max Nikias and his wife, Niki C. Nikias, traveled to Scotland, where he was made an honorary Doctor of Science by the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.
The ceremony, which recognized Nikias’ “dynamic leadership in higher education,” took place June 23 in the university’s Barony Hall.
Upon his arrival on campus, Nikias delivered a keynote lecture to faculty and university leaders on timeless leadership lessons from the classics, especially from theorist-practitioners like Xenophon. In accepting his degree the following day, Nikias spoke in praise of an academic community engaged in the art of “useful learning” and called on educators to remain steadfastly committed to the noble mission of our universities.
The University of Strathclyde is a pioneer in digital signal processing, the area of specialization Nikias became internationally recognized for during his career as an active scholar. Nikias’ body of work was presented at the ceremony by Professor Tariq Durrani, who praised Nikias “as a highly-regarded leader in American higher education, offering a passionate voice that draws on more than 35 years of experience.”
Durrani once served as an adviser to the USC Integrated Media Systems Center, established by Nikias in 1996 as a National Science Foundation center of excellence in multimedia and the internet.
Other honorary degree recipients included Nigel Cantwell, an international consultant on child protection; comedian Sir Billy Connolly; Richard Hunter, convener of court at the University of Strathclyde; and Nigel Whitehead, group managing director of BAE Systems.