Jim Carrey
Jim Carrey receives honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts at Maharishi University of Management, Iowa. Maharishi University of Management

Jim Carrey has been awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Fine Arts by Maharishi University of Management in Iowa, United States.

The 52-year-old Canadian American actor was conferred with the honour in recognition of his significant lifetime achievements as a world-famous comedian and actor, artist, author and philanthropist.

The actor gave a speech on the occasion that collided with the commencement of the university's class of 2014.

In line with his profession, Carrey delivered an inspiring, funny, and enlightening talk.

"He started with some locally related jokes, which drew approving applause and a lot of laughter. He inspired the students to think big and not give in to fear, but to choose love. Many said it was the best commencement talk ever," the university said in a statement.

The Dumb and Dumber actor shared his childhood experiences with over 1000 people present at the event and told them what he learned from his father, who "could have been a comedian but chose to be an accountant because he wanted a stable job."

His father lost his job when Carrey was 12.

"I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you could fail at what you don't love, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love," he told the audience.

Carrey eventually chose to be a comedian.

"When I was about 28, after a decade as a professional comedian, I realised one night in LA, the purpose of my life had always been to free people from concern, just like my dad," he said.

"I can tell you from experience the effect you have on others is the most valuable currency there is," he added giving advice to the students.