Oct 26 2012 9:00AM
The curtain has come down on yet another successful year of UCS graduation ceremonies, with over a thousand graduating students based at UCS Ipswich, UCS Otley and UCS at Suffolk New College toasting their achievements with family and friends during the final ceremonies held at the Ipswich Town Hall.
UCS Provost and Chief Executive, Professor Mike Saks, told graduates that they should be very proud of both the awards they are receiving and of studying at UCS. “Your achievements in obtaining these qualifications today are very great and in a financial climate that is non-too easy they will stand you in good stead in the wider world.”
Those receiving Honorary Graduates included John Burton, co-founder of the non-profit environmental organisation World Land Trust, Britain’s former number 1 female tennis player Elena Baltacha, Liz Calder, founding director of Bloomsbury Publishing, and Michael Morpurgo, OBE, best-selling children’s author of the critically acclaimed novel War Horse.
During his address to those students graduating from the School of Science, Technology and Health, John Burton encouraged the new graduates to focus on something that they believe in, saying: “If you do something you believe in, together we can all make a difference.”
“It would often be very easy to give up,” he explained, “but while what the World Land Trust do could be seen to be small, I do believe that it is worth doing something. If you do something you can believe in, together we can all make a difference.”
After touching on the similarities between the determination and drive needed for her sport and to achieve the awards received by graduates in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Elena Baltacha said: “I would like to congratulate you all who are here to receive your degrees today and commend you for the massive dedication and work you’ve put into your achievements. I am honoured to share this special occasion with you.”
During her address to students graduating from the School of Arts and Humanities, Liz Calder said: “I want to leave you with a thought; it’s a quotation from the great scientist and writer Lewis Thomas who really bought our science and literature together.”
She continued, “He said, statistically the probability of anyone of us being here is so small that you would think the mere fact of existing would keep us all in a contented dazzlement of surprise. A dazzlement of surprise; that is how I feel right now”
Michael Morpurgo provided a video acceptance speech played out to the hundreds of students graduating from the School of Applied Social Sciences. He said: “Where are you now? Well not far actually, lucky you. You’re just beginning, you’re just stepping out.”
He concluded the final graduation ceremony of the year at UCS by saying: “It is a wonderful world out there, and what’s wonderful about the course you’ve been through and the place that you’ve lived in is that it has given you opportunity, and the opportunity you should take is to make your life wonderful.”
In total, around 2,000 students have graduated from UCS at ceremonies held at Bury St Edmunds, Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Ipswich this year. UCS looks forward to celebrating the successes of thousands more students next year.
Read some inspiring stories from this years graduates
See full list of Honorary Graduates