Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

President Mori Addresses the Spring Graduating Class of 2009 at the University of Guam

Palikir, Pohnpei (FSM Information Services): June 3, 2009 - On Sunday, May 31, 2009, President Manny Mori addressed the graduating class of UOG at their Spring 2009 Graduation Ceremony in the UOG Field house. President Mori had been invited to give the key-note address at the request of UOG and the graduating class. He was selected because of the fact that he is an alumni of UOG and since he has obtained the highest level of government office of any UOG graduate; the presidency. He also fit in perfectly with the University's theme of celebrating a "tradition of generations of Tritons", since the President has a daughter who graduated from UOG in December of 2008. President Mori is not the first FSM President to speak at UOG's graduation ceremonies, former President Joseph Uresemal also gave a key-note address during his presidency, but he is not an alumnus of UOG.

President Mori greeted the graduates and thanked the University for the privilege of giving the key-note address. He also thanked the people and government of Guam for hosting FSM citizens on their island and for all the opportunities afforded to FSM citizens in Guam, especially in education.

The President's address focused on the world outside of the University and he talked about the opportunities that the Guam military Build-up will bring and the challenges of the global economic crisis and effects of climate change on the islands. The President told the graduates that "you now have the opportunity to step up to the plate to help fill the dreams of your forefathers; that of a life of dignity underpinned by a better standard of living that is in harmony with nature." He told them that the "promise and hope of these islands rest upon your shoulders" and that they must look within themselves to answer this call.

President Mori also asked UOG to expand its commitment on issues that are unique to the Micronesia region and to place greater emphasis on the challenges produced by global warming. He asked UOG to focus on practical ways to empower communities and the private sector in the islands to help the islands adapt to and combat climate change and to put more effort into producing scientists skilled in identifying and containing health hazards and environmental pollutions.

President Mori ended his remarks by challenging the graduates to take on climate changes as the priority challenge of their generation and he told them that he is confident the University has enabled them to measure up to the challenge.

In addition to the address, President Mori was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters Degree that was certified by the Board of Regents. This degree was awarded based on the recognition of President Mori's work and his vision for FSM and the Micronesia region and was presented to him by the President of UOG, Dr. Robert Underwood. Former President Uresemal also received this doctorate degree when he spoke at UOG's graduation.

In terms of FSM citizens participating in the graduation ceremony, there was one graduate student who earned a Masters degree and two FSM citizens are currently employed as faculty at UOG.

A copy of President Mori's address can be found on the President's website at

For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356