31 March 2014 marked a very special day. Master Jun Hong Lu, the Ambassador for World Peace and a world-renowned Buddhist teacher, was awarded Honorary Visiting Professorship by the University of Siena at Meliá Roma Aurelia Antica Hotel in Rome, Italy.
The visiting professorship is under the Master Program in Global Governance and Cultural Diplomacy of the University of Siena, in collaboration with the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy (ICD). Professor Luca Verzichelli, on behalf of Rector of the University of Siena, presented the award to Master Lu. Erhard Busek, the former Vice Chancellor of Austria, Dr.EratoKozakou-Marcoullis, the former Foreign Minister of Cyprus, and Mark Donfried, Director of ICD all attended the conferring ceremony and praised the ground-breaking work made by Master Lu. Hundreds of Buddhists from Italy, other parts of Europe, and Asia witnessed the moment, with excitement, joy, and gratitude.
The University of Siena is located in Siena, a historic city in central Italy. It was founded in 1240 and is one of the oldest and first publicly funded universities in Italy. It is also one of the prestigious univeristies in Europe. One of the most notable professors of the School of Medicine was Pietro Ispano. Ispano was an illustrious philosopher, physician, and in 1276 became Pope John XXI. The University of Siena is best known for its Schools of Law and Medicine. For more than 700 years, many outstanding physicians, lawyers, and litterateurs have studied at the university, and made great contributions to the country.
At the conferring ceremony, Master Lu wore a red academic gown and a black hood, accepting congratulations from all the distinguished guests. Master Lu expressed deep appreciation towards the University of Siena for the conferral of the professorship. He also expressed his willingness to promote inter-cultural understanding and the unity of faiths, and do all he can to realize the dream of a more peaceful world!