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The Procession
The Procession
The Ceremony
The Ceremony
Students at the ceremony
Students at the ceremony
Dr Ed Gilby
Dr Ed Gilby
Professor Morgan
Professor Morgan
Photos by Nic Delves-Broughton, University Photographer

Press Release - 26 June 2007

The University of Bath’s 2007 summer degree award ceremonies began today at Bath Abbey

The University of Bath’s 2007 summer degree award ceremonies began today at Bath Abbey, with some 600 students attending at three ceremonies during the day.

The first ceremony, at 10am, saw students from the Departments of Economics & International Development and Education receive their degree awards, watched by their families and the Mayor of Bath, Councillor Mrs Sharon Ball.

During the ceremony, the Chancellor, Lord Tugendhat, told the audience of 700 students and families that “this wonderful building, constructed over 500 years ago, illustrates absolutely perfectly what can be achieved from the fusion of vision, ideas, knowledge and skills. This is the perfect venue to celebrate the academic achievements of our graduates.”

He said the University had “grown into one of the top ten universities in the UK” and that its high rate of student retention – 94 per cent of new undergraduates went on to a second year – “reflected the high level of support our students get from the academic and other staff.”

“I believe the success of the University is measured not just in terms of examination results and league table positions, successful as we are in those areas, but in terms of the vibrancy of our research culture, our ability to enthuse students’ creativity, solve problems and foster new ideas, and the University of Bath has all of these attributes in abundance.”

He said the University would help develop the next generation of managers, engineers, designers, scientists, innovators and leaders.

In the second ceremony, at 12-30pm, students from European Studies & Modern Languages will receive their degrees and Dr Edward Gilby, a cancer specialist at the Royal United Hospital, will receive an honorary degree.

In the third ceremony, at 3pm, students from Psychology and Social & Policy Sciences will receive their degrees and Professor Rod Morgan, a criminologist, will receive an honorary degree.

The ceremonies will be preceded by a public procession of some of the University’s senior officers and academics, presided over by Lord Tugendhat. The processions will begin at the Guildhall, go into the High Street, right into Cheap Street, left down Farrs Passage into the Abbey Churchyard. They will return after the ceremonies past Rebecca’s Fountain and into the High Street.

These roads will be closed to traffic for about six minutes during the processions, which will occur at approximately 9-55am, 11-15am (return), 12-25pm, 1-45pm (return), 2-55pm and 4-15pm (return) on all three days. Tomorrow (Wednesday) an extra ceremony will have processions at 5-25pm and 6-45pm (return).

Dr Gilby, Consultant Oncologist at the Royal United Hospital, is an eminent and experienced oncologist who has helped set up the Bath Cancer Unit Appeal at the RUH, which has raised nearly £1 million to install equipment to treat a range of cancers. Dr Gilby was Clinical Director of Medicine at the RUH for ten years.

Dr Semali Perera, of the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, will in her oration during the ceremony describe Dr Gilby as having made “extensive contributions to cancer care”. Dr Perera and Dr Gilby are working on a system to give chemotherapy to cancer sufferers through implanted fibres rather than injections. Dr Gilby receives a Doctor of Science award.

Professor Rod Morgan has worked prominently in the field of criminology as a researcher, reformer and worker for social justice. He spent most of the 1970s and 1980s as a lecturer on criminology and social policy at the University of Bath and sat as a magistrate in the city. He then went to the University of Bristol, where he was a professor and Dean of the Law Faculty. In 2001 he was made Chief Inspector of Probation and then in 2004 Chair of the Youth Justice Board until his resignation earlier this year. He receives a degree of Doctor of Laws.

Other honorary graduates are:
• Professor Michael Dickson, one of the founders of Buro Happold, the worldwide engineering firm started in Bath. Professor Dickson is an expert in the field of structural and architectural engineering. He and seven others set up the UK-based consulting engineers Buro Happold in 1976 in Bath, and he became its Chairman from 1996 to 2005.

The firm now has 14 offices in seven countries and employs over 1,400 staff. Its recent designs include the Emirates Stadium for Arsenal Football Club and the Ascot Racecourse.

Professor Dickson has been Chair of the Construction Industry Council and has worked for sustainable development for many years. He has regularly tutored students in the University’s Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering for many years. He will receive the degree of Doctor of Engineering at the 10am ceremony on Thursday. In his oration, Professor Tim Ibell, Head of the Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, will say: “Michael has exceptional commitment to the profession of engineering and to the education of our future engineers.”

• Ray Kelvin, the entrepreneur who set up the Ted Baker retail empire. Mr Kelvin, who receives his degree at 3pm on Wednesday, started his first business in 1975, before launching his global designer brand of clothing in 1988 from a shop in Glasgow. The business is now worth around £300 million and there are Ted Baker stores on every continent and in most major cities around the world.

Ged Roddy, the University’s Director of Sport, will say that Mr Kelvin, a keen sports fan, has greatly helped the University’s sports scholarship programme, and is a frequent visitor to the University’s sports events. “The Ted Baker phenomenon is founded upon sound business principles and underpinned by a strong ethical approach,” Mr Roddy will say. Mr Kelvin receives a Doctor of Business Administration degree.

• Professor John Willis, who has contributed extensively to the science of solid mechanics, particularly in the areas of composite materials, the propagation and growth of cracks, and anisotropic materials such as crystal and wood, which are stronger in one direction than another. He has written more than 220 research papers on these areas. Professor Willis joined the University of Bath in 1972 as Professor of Applied Mathematics and became Head of the then School of Mathematics before returning to Cambridge University in 1994. He was also Chairman of the Sports Committee at the University of Bath for 14 years. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society. He receives a Doctor of Science degree at the 10am ceremony on Wednesday.

• Sergio Viaggio became a translator for the United Nations, writing theoretical papers on the subject, and was appointed Chief Interpreter with the UN Office in Vienna in 1991 holding the post until recently. He receives a degree of Doctor of Letters at the 3pm ceremony on Thursday.

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