Honorary Degrees Awarded At UCLA To Former Japanese American Students

Photo: Darrell Kunitomi

LOS ANGELES — On May 15, 2010, the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) awarded honorary degrees to former Japanese American students who were forced to leave the University due to their forced relocation and unjust imprisonment in American concentration camps during World War II.

Approximately 200 students were forced to leave the campus not long after the signing of Executive Order 9066 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on February 19, 1942.


Not all of the former students who were identified and located attended the ceremony in UCLA’s Schoenberg Hall. But 48 former students or a family representative were in attendance, receiving diplomas with the Latin phrase, Inter Silvas Academi Restituere Iustitiam, which means “to restore justice among the groves of the academe.”

Here’s a wrap-up of the more significant stories published about the event:

Rafu Shimpo: Pride of Westwood by Gwen Muranaka
Los Angeles Times: UCLA Awards Honorary Degrees To Japanese Americans Who Were Interned by Patrick McDonnell
Los Angeles Times: Photos: UCLA’s Japanese American Honorees by Irfan Khan
Pacific Citizen: UCLA ‘Restores Justice’ By Awarding Nisei Honorary Degrees by Nalea J. Ko
LA Observed: UCLA Does Right By A Neighborhood Teacher And Mom by Jenny Burman
Fly Fisherman: My Mom Gets Her UCLA Degree Tomorrow, Posthumous by Darrell Kunitomi
Clark’s Classic Bamboo Rod Forum: Follow Up, Dad Got The Diploma From UCLA by Darrell Kunitomi
Bruins Nation: Dad Gets His UCLA Degree! by Randall L. Taylor
UCLA Daily Bruin: Internees To Receive Degrees by Kelly Zhou

UCLA Daily Bruin Radio: After 70 Years, Japanese American Students Forced Into WWII Internment Camps Finally Receive UCLA Degrees by Shaina Pan (4:58; click on the right arrow below to listen; © 2010 UCLA Daily Bruin/UCLA Communications Board. Used with permission):


UCLA Daily Bruin Video: Making A Wrong Right: UCLA Awards Honorary Degrees To World War II Internees (via YouTube) by Jennifer Kutsunai:



UCLA also produced a highlight video of the ceremony (3:30):

Related Stories:
Honorary Degrees Awarded At UCLA To Former Japanese American Students – Watch The Video Here (Full video of the ceremony)
UCLA: Bruins Return 70 Years Later To Receive Honorary Degrees
UCLA Seeks Japanese American Students Whose Education Was Interrupted During World War II
UCLA: A Wrong Finally Made Right
University of California To Grant Honorary Degrees To Japanese American Students Forced to Leave UC Campuses During WWII

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