Nearly 1,000 graduates today (Wednesday 27 June) celebrated their achievements on the first day of the University of Stirling’s summer graduation ceremonies.
Graduates of the Faculties of Social Sciences and Natural Sciences received their degrees alongside the University’s newest honorary graduates.
Multi-award winning BBC journalist Mark Daly received the award of Doctor of the University, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to investigative journalism.
A Stirling alumnus, Mark first gained national prominence as ‘The Secret Policeman’ in 2003, after spending eight months working undercover as a police officer in Manchester to expose racism within the police force.
Addressing graduates from the Faculty of Social Sciences, he said: “I’m really thrilled to be coming back to Stirling to receive this award. I can still hardly believe it and am truly honoured by it.
“It’s especially humbling to be recognised by the University where I spent four unforgettable years, and which still holds a special place in my heart. It doesn't seem like 21 years ago when I was standing where my fellow graduates are today and I'd like to congratulate each and every one of you.
“It's not all plain sailing out there, and there will be days you'll long to be back at Stirling, sitting by the loch. But if you work hard and are decent to people, you won't go wrong."
Also recognised during Wednesday’s ceremonies was Patrick McGrath, who received the award of Doctor of the University, in recognition of his outstanding support of academic research through the donation of his literary papers to the University of Stirling archives.
The author of numerous short stories and a series of critically acclaimed novels, Patrick was honoured alongside graduates from the Faculty of Natural Sciences.
He said: “I love universities, and I am particularly proud to be associated with Stirling. This is a young and dynamic place of learning, and it's a great and unexpected honour to be awarded a doctorate here.
“To the students who are graduating today, in my experience the University can become a lifelong place of learning and of friendship. It can provide you with the kind of refreshment of both the heart and the intellect that life out there in the rough world will at times demand.
“I would advise you, don't lose touch with Stirling!”
Tomorrow’s ceremonies (Thursday 28 June) will celebrate the achievements of more than 1,100 graduates from the Faculties of Arts and Humanities, Health Sciences, and Stirling Management School.
An honorary degree will also be bestowed on The Right Honourable Dame Anne McGuire DBE, who will become a Doctor of the University, in recognition of her public service to the people of Stirling and to people with disabilities.
The class of 2018 will join a budding alumni community of more than 85,000 located in 170 countries around the world.
Photos and graduate stories from the summer graduation ceremonies are available on the Graduation website.