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Hillary Clinton will be in Belfast this week for her inauguration as Queen’s University chancellor


By Megan Burns
20th Sep 2021

Queen's University Belfast

Hillary Clinton will be in Belfast this week for her inauguration as Queen’s University chancellor

She was appointed to the role in January 2020, but has been unable to travel to Northern Ireland since then due to the pandemic.

Residents of Belfast, and particularly students at Queen’s University will have a chance this week to get a glimpse of Hillary Clinton, who will be in town for her inauguration at the university’s chancellor.

It’s a position she has held since January 2020, but because of the coronavirus pandemic she has been unable to visit the university until now. She is the 11th chancellor of Queen’s, and its first female one.

The ceremony will take place on Friday, where she will deliver a speech, as well as award several honorary degrees, something she herself received from Queen’s University in 2018, when a scholarship was set up in her name for postgraduate study in politics, human rights and peace-building.

The role of chancellor does not require much involvement in the day-to-day activities of the university, but they often attend graduation ceremonies and act as an ambassador for the institution, as well as acting as an advisor to the vice chancellor and senior management..

She will hold the position for a total of five years, and has said that it is a “great privilege” to do so.

The former US secretary of state, first lady and presidential candidate first visited Northern Ireland with her husband, President Bill Clinton in November 1995, a hugely significant visit that provided much hope at the time.

She also chose Northern Ireland as the location for her first speech after the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke in 1998. On this trip, Hillary and her husband visited families bereaved by the Omagh bombing that had occurred just weeks before.

She returned again the following year to emphasise America’s support for the peace process, and has visited several times since then.