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St Mary's Vice-Chancellor Conducts First Graduation Ceremony at Westminster Cathedral

Vice-Chancellor of St Mary’s University, Twickenham Francis Campbell is set to commence the first summer graduation ceremony since his appointment last year

Vice-Chancellor of St Mary’s University, Twickenham Francis Campbell is set to commence the first summer graduation ceremony since his appointment in August last year. The four ceremonies which will be held today (20th) and tomorrow (21st) at Westminster Cathedral and will feature speeches from special guests including St Mary’s inaugural Chancellor, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Right Reverend Bishop John Sherrington, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster, the Olympian and St Mary’s graduate, Mohamed Sbihi and renowned economist, Professor Philip Booth. Almost 1000 students are set to be awarded degrees from across the University’s academic Schools including Education, Theology & Leadership, Management & Social Sciences, Arts & Humanities and Sport, Health & Applied Sciences. Prospects look good for those receiving awards as the latest figures released by the Higher Education Statistic Authority show that 96% of St Mary’s students enter work or further study within six months of graduating, putting the University in the top 10 nationally. St Mary’s Vice-Chancellor Francis Campbell said, “Our mission at St Mary’s University is not just to equip students with knowledge and skills, with an academic qualification; but to offer an environment that fosters positive values and good characteristics which can help guide them throughout the rest of their lives. “One of the most important aspects of the St Mary’s experience is the very strong sense of community we have. Graduation marks the moment that students move beyond that University community into wider society. I am confident this year’s graduates will make their mark on the world as our strong graduate employment record attests. I congratulate all our students today and offer them my best wishes for their future.” This year’s graduation ceremony comes as St Mary’s celebrates its 165th anniversary. The milestone is being marked by a number of high-profile events, including the installation of Cardinal Vincent Nichols as Chancellor in a service at Westminster Cathedral in May. In addition, there have been a series of high-profile appointments this year including former Secretary of State for Education Ruth Kelly who is to join St Mary’s in a new role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, while former Irish President Mary McAleese was made Distinguished Professor in Irish Studies. Meanwhile, former Cabinet minister, Baroness Warsi, leading barrister Cherie Blair, the UK’s Anti-Slavery Commissioner, Kevin Hyland and Rugby World Cup winning coach Sir Clive Woodward were all appointed as Visiting Professors in recent months.

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