Northwestern University in Qatar (NU-Q) is set to welcome renowned journalist, Lyse Doucet, as the commencement speaker at its 2016 graduation ceremony which will take place on 1 May. Also speaking at the ceremony will be Alya Harthy a member of the graduating class.

Doucet, a Canadian journalist, currently works as the BBC’s Chief International Correspondent. She presents on BBC World Service Radio, BBC World News television and also BBC Radio 4 and BBC News in the United Kingdom.

Having travelled the world covering some of the most significant events in modern history, Doucet played a leading role in the BBC’s coverage of the Arab Spring, reporting from Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. She has spent many years working in the Middle East region also including Afghanistan, Iran and Jordan.

Everette E Dennis, dean and CEO of NU-Q said:

Doucet has had an extraordinary career, and is a leading example to our students who are about to embark on their own professions. These students graduating this week are the next generation of leaders in journalism and the future of the media and communications industry in the Middle East. We are honoured to be able to provide them with the opportunity to meet such an inspiration in the field.’

As the Class of 2016 speaker, Harthy underwent a rigorous selection process and was selected by Dean’s Council, who select the most outstanding candidate annually.

Harthy came to NU-Q as a transfer student from Texas A&M University in Qatar and in her two years at NU-Q she has won numerous awards for her academic work and and contribution to the community. Among her academic achievement was the opportunity to present her research at the Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations; and to participate in Engage Chicago, an eight-week immersive field study program that is organised by Northwestern that combines academic coursework, placements at top community organisations, and powerful community experiences in Chicago.

She also served as the HBKU Film Society’s vice president and has worked collaboratively across Education City to organise the HBKU leadership programme – Cultivate. Committed to service programs, Harthy served as student leader at a NU-Q service learning program in Vietnam and an Education City service trip to Nepal.

Dennis said:

Alya is a remarkable young woman who exhibits the qualities nurtured at NU-Q. A commitment to academic excellence and engagement in the community. We look forward to hearing her message to her fellow students, parents and invited guests at our graduation ceremony.’

NU-Q will also hold a media roundtable with Doucet on 1 May at 2:30 pm where Doucet will meet with local journalists to give an insight into her career.