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Winter graduation celebrations

Over 1000 students, friends and family gathered in St Andrews for winter graduations.

Graduates from 80 different countries including Scotland, China, Nigeria, Germany and the USA, to name just a few, received their academic awards in the Younger Hall on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 December.

Following the ceremonies, new graduates braved the cold winter wind and celebrated their achievements in St Salvator’s Quad with friends and family.

Joining the new graduates were members of staff from across the University celebrating as new Professors, Masters and Doctors.

Mary Stevens

Among those celebrating was Chaplaincy secretary Mary Stevens, who completed her PhD, graduating on Thursday 6 December. Mary has another achievement as the print unit proudly declared her PhD the longest title they had ever printed: ‘Theology of the Consecrated Life in the Apostolic Exhortation Redemptionis Donum of Pope John Paul II, with Particular Reference to the Theological Anthropology, Soteriology and Sanjuanist Spirituality of the Author’.

Mary started her PhD in September 2008, immediately after completing the part-time MLitt  programme, Bible in the Contemporary World. During her career at the University, Mary has worked in English Language Teaching (ELT) then in the Chaplaincy.

For her graduation, Mary wore a clan brooch from the family of a great great aunt, who completed the Lady Literate in Arts (LLA) in St Andrews in the 1880s. The LLA was a ‘distance learning’ qualification for women, introduced to allow them access to University education in the days before they were admitted as students to the University itself.

Mary is retiring at Christmas, her graduation celebrations serving as a wonderful send-off, with friends from across the University joining to celebrate on the day.

Mary Stevens at graduation 2018


Professor Sascha Hooker at graduation 2018Professor Sascha Hooker

Professor Sascha Hooker joined in the graduation celebrations on Thursday 6 December when she was appointed to the position of professor alongside other colleagues from across the University. As is customary, new professors are presented with a book of their choice by the Principal on receiving their professorship. Sascha selected Life and Letters of Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker O.M., G.C.S.I. Volume 1 and 2.

Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker (1817–1911) was one of the most eminent botanists of the later 19th century, a close friend of Charles Darwin and great great grandfather to Professor Hooker.

Sascha, who reduced her hours to work part-time 14 years ago, is also notable for being the first half-time academic at the University to be promoted to professor.


Dr Peter King at graduation 2018Dr Peter King

Dr Peter King graduated with his PhD on Friday 6 December, 31 years after retiring from the University.

Dr King joined the University in 1966 in the Department of Mediaeval History, where he had a long and successful career until his retirement in 1987. Dr King returned to St Andrews in January 2014 to complete a PhD in the Department where he had taught for more than 30 years.

After retirement, Dr King catalogued the George Hay Forbes collection in the University Library. His PhD was on a book he found there, Angelo da Chivasso’s Summa Angelica de Casibus Conscientie.

Dr King wrote an MA thesis in 1954 which was examined by one of the 20th-century’s most famous medievalists, Sir Frank Stenton.

At his graduation, Dr King received a rapturous applause from the audience who took delight in celebrating his achievements with him.

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