Muhammad Yunus made chancellor of UK varsity

Nobel Peace prize winner Muhammad Yunus pioneered the concept of micro-finance and Grameen Bank in Bangladesh.

London: Nobel Peace prize winner Muhammad Yunus, who pioneered the concept of micro-finance and Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, will be the new Chancellor of the Glasgow Caledonian University in the UK.

He succeeds Lord Macdonald of Tradeston, who has completed a distinguished five-year term of office, the university said.

University Principal and Vice Chancellor, Professor Pamela Gillies said: "The University is truly honoured and delighted that Professor Muhammad Yunus has accepted our invitation to become Chancellor. Professor Yunus and the University have a shared commitment to promoting educational opportunities for talented young people from the most difficult of circumstances".

"He has pledged his inspirational leadership in support of the University`s undertaking to harness our intellectual, social and emotional capital and collaborate with others to find solutions to some of society`s most pressing challenges," she added.

"The whole University community warmly welcomes our new Chancellor, one of the world`s outstanding thought leaders," she said.

Accepting the invitation to take on the role of Chancellor, Yunus said: "I look forward to building on the fruitful relationship that has already been established and has produced benefits which are helping to improve the quality of life for people in both our countries."

Yunus already has a well-established working partnership with Glasgow Caledonian University.

In March, he announced details of a new charity organisation, the Grameen Scotland Foundation, at the university.

The Foundation, supported by the Scottish Government, is the cornerstone of a microfinance bank branch in Glasgow designed to alleviate the economic, health and social inequalities in some of Scotland`s poorest communities, the university release added.

It will be precisely modelled on the Grameen Bank, which was founded in 1976 by Yunus in Bangladesh and now operates in 100 countries, including the US.

In 2010, GCU opened the Grameen Caledonian College of Nursing in Bangladesh to help bring nurse and midwifery training to an international standard in a country which is desperately short of nurses.

GCU set up the Yunus Centre for Social Business and Health the same year, which researches the impact of microcredit on the health and wellbeing of communities in Scotland and overseas.

Yunus, who was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters of the university in 2008, delivered the inaugural Magnusson Fellowship Lecture, an annual event which was established in memory of GCU`s late chancellor Magnus Magnusson, who was succeeded by Lord Macdonald in 2007.