He received the honorary degree of Doctor of Science (DSc.) from actor and Ulster chancellor James Nesbitt.
The 72-year-old flew into Northern Ireland for the ceremony, which was attended by over 500 staff, students and graduates, especially.
Nesbitt, a staunch United fan, said at the ceremony: "Ulster has well-established roots in sporting excellence, making Sir Alex the perfect role model for our students and graduates. Sir Alex's success is the result of ambition, integrity and above all, a passion for football and his players which can be emulated in sport and further afield. It is a great privilege for us to host him here at the university today."
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