Famed ancient Indian center of learning, Nalanda University which opened its gates to students in September 2014 is all set to hold the students convocation in August – its first in nearly 800 years.
The ceremony, on August 27, will be attended by President Pranab Mukherjee, in which five graduates from the School of Historical Studies and eight from the School of Ecology and Environment Studies are receiving their postgraduate degrees.
Built in the 5th century as a Buddhist center of learning adjacent to a monastery, Nalanda is regarded as one of the oldest universities in the world, predating Al Azhar University in Egypt, Italy’s University of Bologna and Oxford University in the United Kingdom.
Once a thriving educational center which attracted scholars and students from near and far with some travelling all the way from Tibet, China, Korea, and Central Asia, Nalanda was forced to shut down in the 12th century following an invasion by a Turkish Army.
The revival of the university began in 2010 and the first batch of classes began in 2014. The university also has plans to go back to its roots – Buddhism. It will soon have the first batch for the School of Buddhist Studies, Philosophy and Comparative Religions next month, with about 40 to 50 students.