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Graduation ceremonies brings economic success to Carlisle

Carlisle Cathedral will play host to graduations from July 17-19 (photo Jonathan Becker)

[A]round a thousand students watched by two thousand seven hundred well-wishers will flock to Carlisle to watch the culmination of hours of hard work next week (July 17-19.)

The University of Cumbria’s summer graduation ceremony will see Carlisle celebrate alongside hundreds of visitors who as well as enjoying the completion of years of study will bring a welcome economic boost to the city.

From policing to project management, accounting to zoology, the celebrations are infectious with businesses offering discounts and special offers as part of a collaboration with Carlisle City Council and the Carlisle Partnership.

“University of Cumbria graduation ceremonies are a special time of year in the city,” the leader of Carlisle City Council, Cllr Colin Glover, said. ”It is an opportunity for graduates to celebrate all their hard work and for families and the City of Carlisle to celebrate the success with them. Graduation brings added excitement and vibrancy to the city and of course an added economic boost too. I hope the whole city will join in the celebrations and make sure that our graduates and their families enjoy an occasion that they will remember for the rest of their lives.”

During the tenth anniversary year of the university just over 2,000 students accompanied by over 4,600 friends and family members are due to have attended graduation ceremonies in Carlisle.

A study carried out by the university in 2015 estimated graduation injected £180,000 into Carlisle’s economy but this figure is viewed as a conservative estimate.

“Because students and their families often make the most of graduation and stay overnight, the area’s accommodation sector benefits massively twice a year from an influx of people staying in and around Carlisle,” Prof Frank Peck, from the Centre for Regional and Economic Development, said. “As accommodation cost figures weren’t taken into account in the original research and allowing for inflation I’d estimate the financial benefit to the area of graduation is over £250,000 a year –a welcome benefit at the start of the summer season in July and during the pre-Christmas period in November.”

The university is preparing to mark a number of ‘firsts’ at this month’s graduation ceremonies.

The first zoology students will graduate from a new course set up to make the most of the university’s close proximity to stunning countryside. Also passing out will be paramedics trained as part of a collaboration between the university and North West Ambulance Service alongside much needed nursing staff.

Primary education students from the university’s London campus are also due to graduate adding to the number now working in Tower Hamlets where over 70% of schools employ at least one teacher trained by the university.

“It’s an exciting and proud time for students, parents and staff and provides an excellent opportunity to celebrate what the University of Cumbria is all about,” Vice Chancellor Prof Julie Mennell said. “From the life savers and life changers to those who enrich all our lives through the arts and culture, the difference this university makes to Cumbria and beyond is hugely significant and I’m delighted the city and county can play a part in celebrating this achievement.”

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