'Take all you have learned and put it to work,' President Gast tells graduands


Graduands approach

More than 2,200 undergraduate students gather at the Royal Albert Hall today to receive their degrees at Imperial's Commemoration Day ceremonies.

The ceremonies, attended by some 6,600 guests, are the first for Imperial’s new President Professor Alice Gast – who joined the College in September 2014.

The demands of the world are daunting. We need well-educated leaders like you who can develop the new approaches, the clever solutions, and the compelling ideas that will guide us in the future

– Professor Alice Gast


Congratulating the students President Gast says: “I hope that you take all that you have learned and experienced at Imperial and put it to work for yourself, your family, your community and the world.

“The demands of the world are daunting. We need well-educated leaders like you who can develop the new approaches, the clever solutions, and the compelling ideas that will guide us in the future.”

Imperial will also honour others who have made contributions to the College, research and wider society with honorary degrees and Imperial College medals.

Onora O’Neill, Baroness O’Neill of Bengarve, receives an honorary doctorate of science in recognition of her outstanding academic contribution across a wide range of disciplines including biomedical ethics.

Professor Sir Keith Peters, Emeritus Regius Professor of Physic at the University of Cambridge and former President of the Academy of Medical Sciences, receives an honorary doctorate of science, acknowledging his major contributions to UK medicine through the promotion of clinical research.

Professor Sir Richard Peto of the University of Oxford, the foremost epidemiologist and clinical trialist of his generation, will receive an honorary degree for his significant contribution to epidemiologic research and to the prevention of cancer and cardiovascular disease.

Her Excellency Professor Maha Barakat, co-founder of the Imperial College London Diabetes Centre in Abu Dhabi, will be awarded an Imperial College Medal in recognition of the outstanding contribution she has made to the life and work of Imperial College. The Centre, which opened in 2006, has helped more than 100,000 people in a nation disproportionately afflicted by diabetes and related conditions.

Professor Jenny Higham, Vice Dean (Education and Institutional Affairs) for the Faculty of Medicine at Imperial, will be presented with an Imperial College Medal to mark her outstanding contributions to the establishment of the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine in Singapore, a partnership with Nanyang Technological University. From the outset of discussions with the Singaporean government about the need for a new medical school to address the country’s increasing demand for doctors, Professor Higham has been at the forefront of the development of LKCMedicine.

As well as celebrating academic accomplishments, Student Awards for Outstanding Achievement will be presented to two students who have achieved excellence in extracurricular activities. Receiving the awards this year are Caroline Wood from the Department of Chemistry and Alireza Tahmasebzadeh from the Department of Bioengineering.

Six members of staff will receive President & Rector's Medals at the ceremony. Medals for Outstanding Contribution to Teaching Excellence will be presented to Professor Mary Morrell from Faculty of Medicine and Dr William Knottenbelt from the Department of Computing. Dr John Gibbons from the Department of Mathematics and Dr Rudiger Woscholski from the Department of Chemistry will both receive Medals for Excellence in Pastoral Care. Medals for Supporting the Student Experience go to Dr Maria Toro-Troconis, School of Medicine, and Mr Ian Gillett from the Safety Department.


Deborah Evanson

Deborah Evanson
Communications Division

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Contact details

Tel: +44 (0)20 7594 3921
Email: d.evanson@imperial.ac.uk

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