Winter graduation ceremonies to take place at the Assembly Rooms next week

The University of Bath’s 2009 winter graduation ceremonies take place next week, with more than 700 students receiving their degrees over two days.

The six ceremonies will take place on Tuesday 15 December and Wednesday 16 December, and honorary graduates include Deputy Chairman of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, Ed Smith; and former Head of Biology & Biochemistry and appointed Emeritus Professor by the University of Bath, Professor Anthony Rees.

Students from the Division for Lifelong Learning, School of Health, School of Management, Faculty of Engineering & Design, Faculty of Science, and Faculty of Humanities & Social Science will all be receiving their degrees.

The ceremonies take place at 10am, 12.30pm and 3pm on both days.

A procession within the Assembly Rooms, led by the University Chancellor Lord Tugendhat, will take place before and after each ceremony.

Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell DBE FRS, who receives her honorary Doctor of Laws degree on Wednesday, 12.30pm, has been recognised for excelling as a research scientist as well as in other domains.

Professor Dame Rothwell was made a fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 1999; she won the esteemed Pfizer Research Prize in 2003. In 2004 she was made a Fellow of the Royal Society and was honoured with a DBE in 2005.

She is now Vice President of the Royal Society and President of Society in Biology. She is also Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Manchester University.

In her oration, Professor Sue Wonnacott, Department of Biology & Biochemistry, will say: “What is remarkable is that Dame Nancy Rothwell carries out these roles while her research goes from strength to strength. She manages a research lab of about 20 people - that means directing research, raising grant funding, publishing prolifically, and training the next generation of researchers.”

Other honorary graduates include:

  • Ms Sue Duncan graduated from the University of Bath with a BSc in Sociology and gained a MA in Sociology from the University of Sussex. Her career has involved social research in numerous government departments, including the Department of the Environment (now Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs). In 2002, Ms Duncan was appointed to the new post of Chief Government Social Researcher based in the Cabinet Office. She is now an independent consultant, using her wide experience to continue to advise on research. She will receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree at the 12.30pm ceremony on Tuesday 15 December.
  • Professor Anthony Rees is known as one of the leading experts in antibody engineering. In 1989 he co-founded Oxford Molecular plc, which marketed the antibody molecular modelling software developed by his group at the University of Oxford and the University of Bath. Professor Rees was appointed Head of Biochemistry at the University of Bath in 1990; under the leadership of Professor Rees the University merged two schools together to become the School of Biology & Biochemistry. He was appointed Emeritus Professor by the University in 2003. Professor Rees is currently CEO of MIP Technologies in Sweden. He will receive his honorary Doctor of Science at the 3pm ceremony on Tuesday 15 December.
  •  Mr Ed Smith was appointed to the board of Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) in 2004 due to his wide knowledge and passion for higher education. He was formally Global Assurance COO and Strategy Chairman of Pricewaterhouse Coopers. He was global lead partner to companies such as BT and Sainsbury’s. Mr Smith is now a board member at the Department for Transport where he also chairs the Audit Committee and is a member of the UK Competition Commission as well as Chairman of British Universities & Colleges Sport. Mr Smith will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws Degree at the 3pm ceremony on Wednesday 16 December.

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