Up to 4,000 people will flock to Carlisle Cathedral next week for the University of Cumbria’s 2019 summer graduations.
Seven ceremonies will take place over three days – Tuesday 16 to Thursday 18 July.
The University is also delighted to be awarding two special honours.
Canon Sarah Snyder, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s special advisor for reconciliation and founding director of the Rose Castle Foundation, will be awarded an Honorary Fellowship in recognition of her lifelong and outstanding work to promote faith-based conciliation around the world.
Norfolk headteacher Imran Khan, who graduated in 2012, will receive the award of Alumnus of the Year in recognition of his inspirational achievement.
Around 1,000 graduands have successfully completed courses in many professional areas such as health, nursing, teaching, law and in scientific fields including forestry, conservation and zoology.
Students from the university’s sites in Ambleside, Lancaster, London and Carlisle’s Brampton Road and Fusehill Street will be celebrating alongside those who have completed their courses at partner institutions such as Kendal and Furness Colleges, Energus at Lillyhall, Belfast Bible College and colleges in Northumberland and Lancashire.
Ceremony organisers have been working with senior city centre figures, local authorities, businesses and traders to ensure that Carlisle is ready to welcome its influx of visitors.
A study carried out by the university in 2015 estimated that graduation injected £180,000 into Carlisle’s economy but the figure is considered to be a conservative estimate.
University vice chancellor Professor Julie Mennell said: “From the life savers and world changers, the difference this university makes to Cumbria and beyond is hugely significant and I’m delighted that the city and county can play a part and share in the celebrating with us.
“Our graduates touch every aspects of everyday life from nursing and teaching, to policing in the public sector as well as contributing to arts, culture and protecting our environment. They go on to work in positions that influence and have real impact on us all in our daily lives. The University of Cumbria has, to date, enabled and supported more than 32,000 people to graduate. It enjoys one of the best graduate employability rates in the country, with more than nine in 10 graduates being in work of further study within six months of graduation.”
More than half of Carlisle graduates continue to work in the regional economy, retaining talent, and bringing much-needed skills to the region.
The University of Cumbria is also one of the largest providers of teacher training in the UK and joint first in the UK for students completing their PGCE secondary programmes. It is also one of the few universities in the country offering undergraduate degrees in all four nursing disciplines – adult, children, mental health and learning disabilities – and works closely with health and ambulance trusts across the northwest and further afield to provide new recruits and opportunities to upskill existing employees.