Champion hill runner and leading sports scientist honoured by the University of Stirling

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Scottish champion hill runner Dr Angela Mudge and leading sports scientist Dr Malcolm Fairweather have today been recognised with honorary degrees from the University of Stirling.

Dr Mudge – a Scottish, British and World Champion in hill and mountain racing – was recognised for her outstanding contribution to sports, while Dr Fairweather, who was the first employed sports scientist at the organisation now known as sportscotland, was honoured for his leading role in the advancement of sports science research.

Dr Angela Mudge wears her graduation gown and holds her graduation scroll

Dr Angela Mudge received an honorary doctorate on Friday 25 November

Dr Mudge and Dr Fairweather received their honorary doctorates on the last day of the University of Stirling’s winter graduation ceremonies, which saw 1772 graduates celebrating their achievements this week.

Dr Mudge said: “I am delighted to receive an honorary degree from the University of Stirling. It is both an honour and very apt that the university where I was introduced to the sport has recognised my sporting achievements.

“Dumyat, the hill behind the campus, is where my lifelong passion for hill and mountain running began and I’m still running up Dumyat 31 years later!”

Dr Malcolm Fairweather is pictured outside wearing his graduation robes and holding a scroll

Dr Malcolm Fairweather was honoured for his leading role in the advancement of sports science research

Dr Fairweather said: “I am delighted and extremely proud to receive this honorary award. My sportscotland Institute of Sport job, supports high performance athletes, coaches and sports, and is truly a privilege. As such, I feel very honoured to be recognised in this way.

“The partnership sportscotland has with the University allows us to harness the very best of science and evidence based practice, and focus the skill and acumen of academics within prioritised special projects. This includes a shared intention to understand and enable athlete performance on the world stage.

“Despite having four degrees, this will be the first graduation I have been able to attend in person. I am hugely looking forward to the whole experience – giving closure to the fact I’ve only ever received a degree by post!”

Professor Sir Gerry McCormac, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Stirling, said: “Alongside the achievements of our graduands, we are proud to recognise Dr Angela Mudge, a former Stirling student who has enjoyed phenomenal success in mountain racing, and Dr Malcolm Fairweather, for his pivotal role in improving the performance of Scotland’s athletes.

“They are fantastic role models for our students and are recognised for their outstanding contributions in their respective fields.”


Dr Angela Mudge is recognised for her outstanding contribution to sport.

Dr Angela Mudge is a Scottish, British and World Champion in hill and mountain running. Despite coming late to mountain racing, and a physical disability in childhood, she rapidly excelled, winning multiple titles in domestic and international competition, as well as breaking countless course records.

She has won the Scottish Hill Running Championships four times (1997, 1998, 2006 and 2013), the British Fell Running Championship five times (1997–2000, 2008), and holds the women’s record on an extensive list of Scottish courses.

On the international stage, amongst others, Angela won the Women’s World Mountain Running Trophy in 2000, the World Masters Mountain Running Championship in 2005 and 2010, and the Buff Skyrunner World Series in 2006 and 2007. She won the World Mountain Running Trophy’s Women’s Team Championship in 2003, whilst also finishing second in the individual championships. In 2007, she finished first in the Everest Marathon.

Angela continues to be an active hill runner whilst working as a sports and remedial massage therapist. She is also the event lead for hill and mountain running at Scottish Athletics and is Off Track Event Administrator for British Athletics.

Dr Malcolm Fairweather is recognised for his outstanding contribution to Sports Science research.

Dr Malcolm Fairweather is one of Scotland’s leading sports scientists and, for the last 21 years, has worked for sportscotland, the national agency for sport, where he is currently Head of Performance Solutions.

A former PE and science teacher, he completed a PhD scholarship in Motor Behaviour at Louisiana State University, where he coached many world class athletes in track and field.

In 1996, Malcolm took up one of the UK’s first appointments in skill acquisition at Moray House, University of Edinburgh and, since then, has pioneered the professional recognition and status of applied skill acquisition delivery in the UK. He was the British Association of Sports and Exercise Sciences first High-Performance Accredited Skill Acquisition practitioner, assessor and chartered scientist.

His sports coaching career expanded to rugby, helping Scottish international and British Lions players improve their performance by developing their speed, perception, and decision-making skills.

In 2001, Malcolm joined the Scottish Institute of Sport – now sportscotland – as their first employed sports scientist and, over the last two decades, has played a vital role in increasing the number of scientists, operating across various disciplines, at sportscotland.

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