First in-person graduations since lockdown kick off in style
The first in-person summer graduations since lockdown have taken place at the University of Bradford, with graduates of 2020, 2021, who missed out on the ceremonies due to lockdowns.
Ceremonies are taking place all week, with around 3,000 graduates and associated guests in attendance from Monday through to Friday. Graduates from 2022 will also have their ceremonies this week.
It was also an opportunity for the university to celebrate its honorary graduates from the past two years.
To combat the heatwave, tens of thousands of free bottles of water have been ordered, along with hundreds of free ice lollies.
Vice-Chancellor Professor Shirley Congdon said: “This year’s summer graduations will be particularly memorable, and not just because of the hot weather. This year’s summer graduations are the first since lockdown and so we have taken the opportunity to invite graduates from 2020 and 2021, as well as those graduating this year.
“Summer graduation is a rite of passage for students. It marks a turning point in their lives. The fact that so many were denied that special moment because of covid makes this year’s ceremony more significant.
“We are proud of all our students, of the journeys they are on, and of their potential to make a real difference in the world. We are proud to have been able to provide them with some special moments they can cherish and share with loved ones, and that they each had their moment to shine, and be proud of what they have achieved.”
The 2022 graduations are also the last under the tenure of Chair of Council the Rt Hon Baroness Ann Taylor, who steps down this year after seven years in the role. She is succeeded by Eileen Milner.
Students from 2020 and 2021 attending the ceremony said they were pleased they had been given a chance to attend an in-person event to mark their graduation.
Accounting and finance BSc graduate from 2021 Mirza Baig, said: “I am glad the university has run ceremonies for the 2021 year, because it’s great for my parents to be able to experience this moment.”
Pictured below, two graduates celebrate in the sun
Rhiann French and Jessica Doherty both graduated in 2020, each with a BSc in business management, as part of a degree apprenticeship with Morrisons. Rhiann said: “Today has given us the chance to meet up with friends we last saw just before the pandemic.”
Jessica added: “It’s been very nostalgic, because the last few modules of our course were all moved online because of covid, so this has felt like closing a chapter.”