The first group of UCLan graduates finally got a chance to celebrate yesterday
The celebratory day was long over due for some graduates, and is the first of many over the next two weeks.
The first set of students returned to the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) yesterday for their long-awaited graduation ceremonies.
Kicking off the celebratory season were graduates from the Faculty of Allied Health and Wellbeing, who were split across two ceremonies, taking place at 12:30, and 3:30pm respectively.
The ceremonies were held at the Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre, on the Preston Campus, where the graduates took to the stage in caps and gowns to accept their certificates in front of friends and family.
Addressing the graduates, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Lynne Livesey said: “The past 18 months have been challenging for us all, and some here today should have graduated last year, so thank you for your patience in waiting for your ceremony to go ahead. You have all shown great resilience during this time, which I know will stand you in good stead for the future.
“Make sure that you leave this hall today with confidence, ambition and a desire to make a real difference. You are the future, the future chief-executives, consultants, entrepreneurs, health scientists, artists and designers of renown. You are the leaders of tomorrow. Life won’t always be plain sailing but during your studies we hope that you will have acquired a tool kit that will help you to navigate choppy waters.”
Both ceremonies ended with the traditional throwing off motorboards in the air, before students were walked out of the hall to the sound of Neil Diamond’s ‘Sweet Caroline.’
Post-event celebrations then took place on the new multi-million pound University Square afterwards, with live music, refreshments and photo opportunities available for all attendees.
BA Sport and Physical Education graduate, Emily Carter from the Wirral, said: “It feels amazing to be graduated. We’ve been waiting for ages and after a tough year with Covid, it feels so good to finally be a graduate of UCLan- I can’t believe it!”
James McMahon, another Sport and Physical Education student, who actually graduated in 2020, said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be here, it’s been a long 16 months, but I’m glad to be here with my friends and family, it’s a great celebration.”
In order to ensure the safety of everyone involved, the university advised all graduates, visitors and staff members to take a lateral flow test beforehand, whilst attendees were also asked to wear face coverings on the day.
In total 65000 graduates from the classes of summer 2020, winter 2020 and summer 2021 will be graduating across 26 ceremonies between 6 and 17 September.
The celebratory ceremonies are the first to take place since December 2019, and will be live streamed on the University’s YouTube channel, for family and friends around the world to watch as well.