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Old 03-03-15, 02:36 PM
sriyanj sriyanj is offline
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Default Death of Prof. J.N.O. Fernando

From: Ranil Guneratne <ranildg@yahoo.com>
Date: Tue, Mar 3, 2015 at 12:51 PM

You may wish to circulate the news that Prof. J.N.O. Fernando, a prominent Old Boy and a former member of the Board of Governors, passed away suddenly last afternoon. He was quite a bit senior to us, at 71, but a well known figure in academic circles as well as in the Church. He was Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at the Open University of Sri Lanka, a past General President of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science, a past President of the Institute of Chemistry, Ceylon, and the Honorary Rector of the College of Chemical Sciences, the academic arm of the Institute. I understand that the funeral will take place on Thursday, probably in Moratuwa.
Cheers,
R.D.

Dr. Ranil D. Guneratne
Department of Chemistry
University of Colombo
Colombo 03
SRI LANKA


From: Mevan Pieris <mevanpieris@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, Mar 2, 2015 at 3:39 PM



Dear Sriyan
Please be informed of the death of Professor JNO Fernando. He was undergoing treatment for colon cancer and died suddenly. Please inform the prefects of the death.
Regards
Mevan Pieris


From: Eddie Appathurai [mailto:eddie_appathurai@yahoo.com]
Sent: Tuesday, March 03, 2015 8:58 AM


The sad news of the sudden demise of O'leap Fernando was announced at the OBA Committee meeting last evening.

Details of funeral arrangements are not known as yet.



Prof. Oleap Fernando dead
March 2, 2015, 8:02 pm

http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_...e_title=120613

Eminent Chemist, Scientist, Academic and Science Administrator Prof J. N. O. Oleap Fernando died yesterday at a private hospital in Colombo after a brief illness. He was 68.

He was educated at Prince of Wales College, Moratuwa, S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia, the University of Colombo and Imperial College, London.

Fernando joined the University of Peradeniya as an assistant lecturer in Chemistry and then the University of Colombo. After training in radio isotopes at the Australian School of Nuclear Technology, New South Wales, he joined Imperial College of Science and Technology, of the University of London as a Commonwealth postgraduate scholar in 1968 and studied heats of adsorption of diatomic gases on tungsten using the calorimetric method. He was awarded the degree of Doctor of Philosophy of the University of London in 1971.

He returned to Sri Lanka as a lecturer in Physical Chemistry at the University of Colombo. He later spent a sabbatical at University of Manchester, Institute of Science and Technology to study surface chemistry by chromatographic determination of isosteric heats of adsorption on zeolites. In 1979 he became senior Professor of Chemistry of the Open University of Sri Lanka, Dean of the Faculty of Natural Sciences from 1993 to 1999 and Vice Chancellor. Fernando was on the visiting staff at University of Jaffna, Ruhunu University, University of Papua New Guinea, University of Colombo, University of Peradeniya, University of Sri Jayawardenepura and University of Kelaniya. Fernando also served the Institute of Chemistry Ceylon as a council member and General Secretary, Honorary Secretary for Educational Affairs, Chairman of Educational Committee, and Academic Board, and Honorary Dean of the College of Chemical Sciences and Founder Coordinator of the Graduateship Course in Chemistry.

Funeral arrangements will be notified later.
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File Type: jpg Oleap-Fernando-150x150.jpg (8.8 KB, 0 views)

Last edited by sriyanj; 20-03-15 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 05-03-15, 10:40 PM
sriyanj sriyanj is offline
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Default Prof. J N O Fernando.

To The Prefects Group,

It is with great sadness we inform you the passing away of Prof. J.N.O. Fernando, a distinguish Old Boy,a well known figure in academic circles and a former member of the Board of Governors.

He held the following important positions.

Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at the Open University of Sri Lanka.
General President of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science.
President of the Institute of Chemistry, Ceylon.
The Honorary Rector of the College of Chemical Sciences.


For funeral details
http://www.tyretracks.com/showthread.php?t=1281
http://www.tyretracks.com/showthread.php?t=1067
http://www.tyretracks.com/showthread.php?t=635


Best regards

Sriyan
on behalf of The Prefects Group.



From: Dr. Narmmasena Wickremesinghe <nwosh1@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, Mar 3, 2015 at 8:28 PM
Subject: Re: Death of Prof. J N O Fernando.

Thanks Sriyan. Really sad. We were classmates throughout.
Narme

Sent from my iPad


From: Mano Appapillai <manoappapillai@gmail.com>

Date: Tue, Mar 3, 2015 at 6:40 PM
Subject: Re: Death of Prof. J N O Fernando.


Sriyan
Thank You.
Suggest e:mail header just say "Prof JNO Fernando"

"Death of " is morbid . . . no one likes to get e:mails with that headline.
He was my rival in our days at STC
:-)
San Jose, CA


From: Wignarajah <kwigna@yahoo.com>
Date: Tue, Mar 3, 2015 at 10:43 PM
Subject: Re: Death of Prof. J N O Fernando.
To: Sriyan Jayasekera <stc.prefects.group@gmail.com>


Mevan - this is very sad news. Was he ill? because I don't think he was more than about 73 years.
Sincerely
Wiggy


From: Lecamwasam, Deepal (Health) <Deepal.Lecamwasam@health.sa.gov.au>
Date: Wed, Mar 4, 2015 at 8:39 AM
Subject: RE: Death of Prof. J N O Fernando.

Very sad to hear Sriyan.Like GLP I remember him winning many prizes.A very distinguished Old Boy.My deepest sympathies.Leca



Prof. J.N.O. Fernando – An Appreciation



Published: 07 March 2015 http://educationtimes.lk/print-editi...n-appreciation




10 78c07

(By the Council of Institute of Chemistry Ceylon)Prof. Oleap Fernando passed away on 02/03/2015 at the age of 71 years. Prof. Fernando was a very versatile person and played many parts as an academic—He was a research chemist, a lecturer in Chemistry, an academic administrator in several institutions of higher education in Sri Lanka and abroad, and a staunch promoter of quality chemical education. He has held many prestigious positions including that of Dean/Science at the Open University, The President of the Sri Lank Association for the Advancement of Science, The President of The Institute of Chemistry Ceylon and Hony. Rector of the College of Chemical Sciences of The Institute of Chemistry Ceylon. He was also a fellow of the National Academy of the Sciences of Sri Lanka.


Prof. Fernando was educated at the Prince of Wales College, Moratuwa and at S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia. He shone as an exceptionally brilliant student in his schooldays. He did an Honours degree in Chemistry at the University of Ceylon and had his postgraduate and post-doctoral training at the Australian School of Nuclear Technology, New South Wales, Imperial College of Science and Technology of the University of London, where he received the degree of PhD, and the Institute of Science and Technology at the University of Manchester.


Prof. Fernando was the founder of the Graduateship Examination in Chemistry in Sri Lanka commenced in 1979. He was also the founder coordinator of the Graduateship programme in Chemistry this was after the LTCC Course commenced in 1971. This was later upgraded to Diploma. At the beginning, there was no office, no staff, no infrastructure, no library and no money to run the programmes. However, members of the Institute worked hard in rented premises and under trying circumstances, and produced the first batch of graduate chemists, which consisted of 4 graduates.


This year, 106 graduates were conferred degrees and 79 diplomats received the DLTC qualification. A total of1075 graduate chemists and 1025 chemistry technicians have been produced so far. The College of Chemical Sciences (CCS) now owns and accommodates students and staff at Adamantane House, which has about 20,000 square feet of floor space, an auditorium, lecture theatres, laboratories, instrument room, library, board room and staff rooms. Additional working space is rented at a nearby building belonging to the College of Surgeons.


These remarkable achievements have been made in a few decades, and the driving force behind them was Prof. Fernando. If not for his initiative, vision, dedication, persistence, hard work and sheer enthusiasm these successes would not have been possible. His leadership inspired those who worked with him. They were infected by his zeal and contributed their best. Prof. Fernando also expected, and got, the best from the students. CCS students, both past and present, will be ever grateful for the chance they got to do the Graduateship in Chemistry when the state universities could not accommodate all students who qualified to enter those institutions.


Prof. Fernando strived hard to gain recognition here and abroad for the Graduateship in Chemistry degree. His unique voice was raised at many for a to gain this recognition. The Universities of Colombo and Peradeniya, at first, denied admission to graduate chemists to do their postgraduate degrees. The first graduate chemist to be accepted to do a postgraduate degree was admitted by a university in the United Kingdom. Today, about 300 graduate chemists have obtained postgraduate degrees from prestigious universities all over the world, and, of these, about 100 have received PhD degrees.
Recognition for the Graduateship in Chemistry did not come for the asking. It was earned through a well-structured programme, qualified teaching staff and the moderation of question papers and the scrutiny of answer scripts by outside experts. These things didn’t just happen. Prof. Fernando worked tirelessly and argued persuasively and passionately to make them happen.


Prof. Fernando touched the lives of many colleagues and students. Anyone with a problem, no matter how trivial, could be sure of a patient and sympathetic hearing and, almost always, a solution. His voice could thunder when he saw injustice, unfairness, carelessness or stupidity. Students felt instinctively that if he was stern or harsh, it was for their own good. He cared a great deal about their future and was extremely happy and proud when they did well in their careers.
The outpouring of grief when the news of Prof. Fernando’s demise reached relatives, friends and students is a testimony to the love, respect and gratitude they had for him. May God comfort his wife Mandrupa and his family. May Prof. Fernando’s soul rest in peace.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg z_p05-Prof.-Oleap.jpg (9.5 KB, 0 views)

Last edited by sriyanj; 20-03-15 at 07:55 PM.
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Old 06-03-17, 03:10 PM
sriyanj sriyanj is offline
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Default Prof. J.N.O. Fernando Brilliant intellect

Prof. J.N.O. Fernando

Brilliant intellect


March 2, 2015, dawned as usual, and we the staff of the Department of Chemistry at the Open University of Sri Lanka (OUSL) were at a staff meeting in the office of the Head of the Department. The meeting was interrupted abruptly when the message of the sudden demise of Emeritus J.N.O. Fernando (JNOF), retired Senior Professor of Chemistry at OUSL, trickled in. We were dumbstruck; we remained speechless for some time, unable to digest the news.

JNOF was a giant, both literally and otherwise. His contribution to the progress of the OUSL as Senior Professor of Chemistry, as Head of the Department of Chemistry, and as Dean of the Faculty of Natural Sciences, has been recorded and published previously, and needs no repetition.

JNOF was considered synonymous with Institute of Chemistry Ceylon (ICHEMC) located at Rajagiriya.

In other words, he was considered as the “Institute" as a result of the enormous contribution that he made to the development of ICHEMC. He was a giant who bestrode the corridors of both, Open Unversity (until his retirement), and ICHEMC, like a colossus—an excellent administrator who stood by principles at all times.

His famous statement, best said in Sinhalese, "Kiyana dey karanawa; karana dey kiyanawa,” still echoes among his contemporaries, including eminent and distinguished academics as Emeritus Professor Nalini Ratnasiri, Emeritus Professor Uma Coomaraswamy, and Emeritus Professor Dayantha Wijeyesekara.

Prof. JNOF did not mince his words. He expressed his ideas and opinion on many matters with great conviction and determination; there were not many who could counter his point-of-view (though they do now in his absence). His candid opinion was sought after by his peers on many matters.

Tributes and appreciation letters came in droves during the period after his untimely death. A special publication of the Chemistry in Sri Lanka [the quarterly magazine published by the Institute of Chemistry Ceylon (ICHEMC)] containing a collection of such articles dedicated to the late Professor was published, and was ceremoniously launched in the midst of a large gathering of his family members and close associates.

Prof. JNOF was a top scholar at St.Thomas College, Mt Lavinia, and the recipient of several scholarships at the time. In turn, he was instrumental in establishing many awards, scholarships, prizes, etc. at ICHEMC which went a long way in motivating the students.

I am sure the past graduate chemists, more than a thousand of them who may or may not be here, will attest to this fact. In keeping with his vision, a scholarship fund was initiated at the first death anniversary commemoration ceremony.

Prof. JNOF led a full life before his untimely demise. No doubt there is a lot for all of us to learn.

He made a lot of sacrifices to create more opportunities for those aspiring for higher education, a national need at present, given the increasing number of A.L. qualified students wanting to pursue higher studies. In addition to his numerous official duties, he held many positions in learned bodies including SLAAS (as General President), OPA, NASL, etc. contributing immensely in their development activities.

On a personal note, I would like to mention that as my mentor, he was instrumental in recruiting me as a temporary demonstrator at the department of chemistry at OUSL in 1990.

That appointment 26 years ago has led me to my current position as Senior Lecturer in Chemistry.

He also persuaded me to take up the post of Vice President in the Council of ICHEMC, the stepping stone for the post of President which I hold now. Unfortunately, he did not live to witness the day that I took up that position.

The second death anniversary of Emeritus Professor J.N.O. Fernando fell on March 2, and a commemoration ceremony was held at the Institute of Chemistry Ceylon (ICHEMC) with the unveiling of his bust, and a memorial oration was delivered by Emeritus Professor Eng. Dayantha Wijeyesekara, former Vice Chancellor of OUSL, and presently Chancellor of the University of Vocational Technology (UNIVOTEC)

Memories of Late Emeritus Professor J.N.O. Fernando will remain etched in our minds for a long time to come. No doubt, his family members: wife, Mrs. Mandrupa; son, Oshan; daughter-in-law, Gayathri; and granddaughter, Maia; will miss him, but continue to remember him in their hearts forever.

Let us all offer a silent tribute and prayer for the Man—Jerence Nansel Oleap Fernando.

- M.R.M. Haniffa
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