Abu Dhabi: The Mohamed Bin Zayed University for Humanities (MBZUH) in Abu Dhabi has launched the world’s first Bachelor of Tolerance and Coexistence Studies to spread a culture of human fraternity and contribute to sustainable social development.
The degree aims to create graduates with a high-level of academic knowledge and practical skills that enable them to spread a culture of tolerance and coexistence. It includes courses that promote these values, inspired by the legacy of late Sheikh Zayed, as well as covering the role of media in encouraging a cohesive society, comparative religion and Islam.
Dr Khaled Salem Al Dhaheri, chancellor of Mohamed bin Zayed University for Humanities, said: “Education plays a clear role in fostering the values that create harmony between societies. MBZUH’s bachelor degree is the first higher education programme in the world that develops students’ understanding and respect for different cultures, civilisations and religions, so they can act as ambassadors and build bridges of communication between cultures and civilizations.”
The three-year programme will enrol its first students from September 2021.
Graduates will gain a variety of employment opportunities, and the course will provide additional skills for careers in social work, events, communications, counselling, religious affairs coordination, the police force and some government and non-government organisation roles.
The new bachelor’s degree was adopted at the first meeting of the MBZUH Board of Trustees in January and aims to achieve the university’s vision of excellence and leadership, and to establish Abu Dhabi as the capital of tolerance, peaceful coexistence and civilised dialogue.
It follows the United Nations’ declaration of February 4 to be International Day of Human Fraternity, in recognition of the historic meeting between Pope Francis and Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Ahmed el-Tayeb in Abu Dhabi on this date in 2019. During the meeting, the two religious leaders had signed the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together.
MBZUH, launched in November 2020, is a first-of-its-kind higher education institution, offering programmes in social studies, humanities and philosophy for bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. The university aims to create graduates who are intellectual leaders and distinguished citizens who practice tolerance and coexistence and help to spread these values in the community, through academic and applied research, exchange agreements with other entities, locally and internationally, and by facilitating and supporting a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship.
The university also aims to open international campuses.