Wesley College Colombo presents the second annual ‘Shelton Wirasinha Oration’ at 5.00 pm on Saturday 24th November at the auditorium of the Bandaranaike Centre for International Studies (BCIS) at the BMICH.
It will be delivered by Deshamanya Prof J.B. Disanayaka on the topic – ‘The Employability of Today’s Youth’.
This year’s Oration co-incidentally falls on Shelton Wirasinha’s 95th birth anniversary. With his 21 year tenure as Principal of Wesley College from 1962-1983, Arthur Shelton Wirasinha goes on record as being the second longest serving Principal of the College after Revd. Henry Highfield.
A product of Richmond College, Galle, Shelton Wirasinha, better known as ‘ASW’, touched the hearts and lives of tens of thousands of students who passed through the portals of Wesley College. Now spread across Sri Lanka, and all over the world, they fondly remember him with great respect and deep gratitude even to this day.
The Orator, Prof. J.B. Disanayaka is Professor Emeritus of the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka and the former Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Thailand, Cambodia and Laos. He held the Chair of Sinhala at this University and was the Senior Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London (1992-93).
He was awarded the honorary degree of D.Litt. by his University, and the highest presidential title, ‘Deshamanya’, by the Government of Sri Lanka. The University of Sabaragamuwa (Sri Lanka) awarded him the honorary title ‘Kirthi Sri’.
He has been the Chairman of the National Arts Council of Sri Lanka and a member of the UNESCO National Commission. Primarily a linguist by profession, he had his postgraduate training as a Fulbright scholar in Linguistics and Social Antropology at the University of California, Berkeley (1963-65), and later at the University College London (1965-66). Commonwealth and other fellowships took him to Rome, Edinburgh and London.