A ceremony held on Friday 20 November 2020, which featured the launch of a new publication 'The University of Malta: Legacies and Bearings' as well as the inauguration of the recently refurbished Aula Magna and the Ġibsoteka at the Valletta Campus, marked the close of the 250th Anniversary celebrations since the University’s founding in 1769.
The book, edited by Prof. Keith Sciberras, Dr Emanuel Buttigieg, Prof. Mark Anthony Falzon, Prof. Dominic Fenech and Dr Gillian M. Martin, contains never-before-seen visuals and accounts capturing the evolution of the University of Malta into the well-respected institution it has become today.
The Ġibsoteka, consisting of a group of artefacts made out of gypsum and which are of precious historical value to the University, are now being exhibited in the foyer of the Aula Prima of the same campus.
The Aula Magna has been refurbished and embellished in a way that respects the historical context of the entire building, which in itself constitutes an ancestral site of the University.
Rector Emeritus Prof. Juanito Camilleri was invited to share his reflections on the university inspired by this new book.
Rector Prof. Alfred J. Vella then delivered an historic oration to those present, thanking all those who have somehow contributed to making the unique story of the University a success.
Prof. Vella also maintained that the most important resource for Malta is its human resource, and the fact that the country has always invested in its students along the years is a sign that successive governments have always acknowledged this. The Rector concluded his speech by auguring that 50 years down the road, UM would be celebrating its 300th anniversary and that the campus corridors will still be filled with the eager voices of students and academics debating and discussing how to solve the world’s problems, and that student participation in the governance of the University will be more frequent and more impactful by that time.
The ceremony was also attended by Minister for Education and Employment, Hon. Owen Bonnici.