Classes of 2020 and 2021 return to Stirling campus to celebrate graduation

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Graduates gather for the 2020/2021 celebration events.

More than 2,000 University of Stirling graduates who were unable to attend a ceremony in 2020 or 2021 due to the pandemic are returning to campus this week to celebrate their achievements.

Returning graduates will don their robes and receive their customary doff of the cap from University Chancellor, the Rt Hon Lord Jack McConnell, alongside Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Gerry McCormac, at six ceremonies between 21 and 27 June.

Principal at ceremony
Professor Sir Gerry McCormac
Principal and Vice-Chancellor, University of Stirling
We are extremely proud of our graduates from 2020 and 2021, who overcame significant challenges during the pandemic to complete their studies. Their success is testament to their tenacity and strength of character in adapting to new ways of teaching and learning.

Speaking ahead of the celebrations, Professor McCormac said: “We are extremely proud of our graduates from 2020 and 2021, who overcame significant challenges during the pandemic to complete their studies. Their success is testament to their tenacity and strength of character in adapting to new ways of teaching and learning.

“The University has emerged stronger from the pandemic and having our graduations return to campus is an important milestone in that recovery. We very much look forward to welcoming our classes of 2020 and 2021 back to campus to celebrate together.”

Lord McConnell – also a graduate of the University – added: “This event will be a very happy occasion. I am delighted that so many of those who missed their chance to celebrate their graduation with staff, family, and friends will return to our beautiful campus to take the stage.

“I can't wait to congratulate them as they enjoy their special day. I wish all our graduates good health, success and happiness as they continue on their journey, well equipped with their University of Stirling award.”

Jack McConnell addresses graduates.

University Chancellor The Rt Hon Lord Jack McConnell addresses graduates.

It was also a special day for University member of staff Lisa Holman who became the first woman to fulfil the role of macebearer at graduation.

Lisa - who is PA to the Executive Director of Estates and has worked at the University for 20 years - led the academic procession at the afternoon ceremony. 

She said: “It's wonderful to be part of such a happy occasion. Having had two children go to university - one of whom didn't attend a graduation ceremony due to the pandemic - it feels extra special to be part of today's celebration.

“To see everyone gathered together to support their loved ones is a true reminder of why we do what we do at the University - it's the reason we are here, and it's a privilege to be part of graduation.”

Lisa Holman, macebearer

Macebearer: Lisa Holman

In 2020 and 2021, graduating students received their award documentation online and via post, with celebrations held online. Graduates from the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport returned to campus to celebrate yesterday (June 21), with those from the University of Stirling Management School and Faculty of Arts and Humanities recognised today (June 22). Two ceremonies will be held on Friday 24 June (Faculties of Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences) and one on Monday 27 June (Faculty of Natural Sciences).

Ceremonies for 2022 graduations will take place next Wednesday and Thursday (June 29-30).

The University hosts three annual graduations – in spring, summer, and winter. Graduates join the University’s 100,000-strong alumni community, spanning 178 countries.

For more information, please visit the University’s graduation webpages.

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