Commencement speaker draws on peacekeeping role in Rwanda
May 13, 2013
Roméo Dallaire, a Canadian senator and retired lieutenant general, will be the speaker at the commencement ceremony for the College of Arts and Sciences on May 18.
Dallaire commanded the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda and is the author of Shake Hands With the Devil, a first-hand account of the world’s, and his own, failure to stop the 1994 genocide.
Building on our partnership
Dallaire’s relationship with Lewis & Clark began on November 18, 2004, when Michael Graham B.A. ’06 invited him to address the campus. Dallaire then became the first contributor to a scholarship that now bears his name.
The Romeo Dallaire Scholarship Fund provides full tuition, books, and living expenses for low-income sub-Saharan African students wishing to study English at Lewis & Clark for one academic year. Since 2004, Lewis & Clark has enrolled seven scholars from Rwanda.
“Sometimes as survivors we feel misunderstood by our fellow Rwandans and the outside world,” said Emmanuel Habimana, this year’s Dallaire Scholarship recipient. “I contribute to my society by doing projects that raise awareness about the issues we face and helping survivors feel understood and appreciated.”
One of Habimana’s projects has been to produce and codirect a documentary titled Komora: To Heal about children orphaned by the genocide in Rwanda. The film includes Habimana’s personal interviews with Dallaire.
Dallaire will be introduced at the commencement ceremony by Matthew Rugamba ’13, an international affairs major from Kigali, Rwanda. The ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. at Griswold Stadium in the Pamplin Sports Center.