Graduation review: Tuesday 11 July 2017



Image of parents taking photos of graduands on the steps of the Liverpool Cathedral

Students from Natural Sciences and Psychology celebrated their graduation at Liverpool Cathedral on the morning of Tuesday 12 July, while graduands from the Liverpool Business School processed in the afternoon.

Morning ceremony


Image of Alice MastersAlice Masters, graduates with a BSc (Hons) in Wildlife Conservation. She also received the Natural Sciences and Psychology Wildlife Conservation Prize. During her degree, Alice’s internship on tiger forensics focussed on stopping the illegal trading of protected wildlife and she is currently working on a DNA assay (test) that can detect the presence of tiger DNA in goods being shipped or flown around the world. She commented: “I have gained so many skills during my time at LJMU.  The main ones are survey skills (plants, invertebrates, birds), skills in genetics such as DNA extraction, PCR and genetic analysis (from my project), as well as the ability to use population viability analysis software, Geographical information systems and statistical software. I can also do water analysis, behavioural studies and I can write consultancy reports.”


Image of Rachel Hagan

Rachel Hagan gained a First Class (Hons) in Applied Psychology. She enjoyed her experience as a mature student, stating: “I have acquired a great amount of confidence in myself and my abilities. Being a mature student and mother to four young children, one of which was born halfway through my degree, has taught me great organisational skills. I have never been confident in public speaking, the thought of speaking to a crowd just made me want to run away, but when I was encouraged by my tutors to present my dissertation project at the Psychology student conference and won first place, it boosted my confidence massively.”


Image of Victoria Buckley

Victoria Buckley, BSc (Hons) Biology, has been a very active Course Rep, and set up the LSU Biology Society during Level 5 of her degree, leading as President of the Society. A highlight of her time at the University was working on a research project on the genes involved in insecticide resistance. All this academic and social experience has improved her leadership and research skills.


Image of Tiffany Volle

Tifany Volle studied BSc (Hons) Animal Behaviour. Originally from France, she found Liverpool a very student-friendly city and a highlight of her degree was her final year research project: “I had the chance to go to Tanzania to study red-tailed monkeys repertoire. This experience gave me an insight of what working on the field was and the opportunity to discover a new country and culture and to meet people from different backgrounds.”


Image of Jessica Mitchell

Jessica Mitchell’s PhD in Physical and Biological Anthropology included research on scent communication in banded mongooses. During her PhD, she won several awards including one for science communication with children.  She now works engaging young people with STEM subjects.



President of the LiverpoolSU, Yasmin Ibrahim, BSc (Hons) Applied Pyschology. She has plans to study medicine become a Paediatrician.


Image of Zia Chaudhry

During the morning ceremony, the University conferred Zia Chaudhry MBE with an Honorary Fellowship in recognition of his outstanding contribution to community and interfaith relations. The Liverpool barrister is former Chair of Merseyside Council of Faiths and Founder of the 'Just your Average Muslim project', as well as the Spirit of Cordoba project, which promotes understanding and raises awareness of Muslim history, culture and achievements. Zia was awarded an MBE for services for interfaith relations in 2015.

His citation was presented by His Honour, Judge Clement Goldstone, LJMU Honorary Fellow and the Resident Senior Circuit Judge in Liverpool.

Zia talked about interfaith work being “based on the idea that the world is big enough for all of us and if we can learn to co-exist and be tolerant of each other, then a happy and prosperous future beckons.”

Addressing the graduates he said:

“I firmly believe that the greatest minds should be curing cancer, not creating conflicts…and…those who seek division are arguably on the back foot, their backtracking due in no small part to young, educated, invigorated citizens who think that it’s time to change things, and change them for the better. Those citizens are you.”

Read the full oration for Professor Zia Chaudhry


Afternoon ceremony

Image of Paul Ireland

Paul Ireland, Account Manager for the LJMU Student Recruitment and Admissions Team, said he had witnessed first-hand the endless positive feedback students about their experiences of studying at the University, and decided to study for an MBA in Executive Development alongside his full time job.

“I have really enjoyed the last three years of part time study at LJMU. The first rate teaching and learning facilities, alongside a team of passionate and knowledgeable staff made sure that I never regretted embarking on my postgraduate journey. I am confident that the skills I have learned will assist me in any future career plans and am really proud to have been a part of the MBA Class of 2017. For anyone considering starting a postgraduate course, I'd say "definitely go for it, you won't regret it!"


Sam Potts, pictured with James Dunningham

Sam Potts, pictured with James Dunningham, Director at Kenyons, graduates in Business and Public Relations and won the award for Academic Excellence from the Marketing Agency. 

He commented: “My student experience at LJMU has been excellent. Facilities are good and relevant support is available at all levels to ensure a smooth learning process. Highlights of my final year of study included planning a Liverpool based festival and comedy night in the Event Management module, and a study of corporate partnerships for my dissertation. I would like to use the knowledge and skills gained in these areas in future job roles, and it will influence type of work I apply for.


Nicole Sellers, Rose Jackson and Sydney Keighrey pictured with Wayne and tutors Mike Swain and Keith Thompson

Nicole Sellers, Rose Jackson and Sydney Keighrey also graduated from the Business and Public Relations degree course. All three were recognised for excellence in the work they undertook whilst on placement by leading integrated marketing communications company, One based in Manchester. The Think as One Award was presented by Managing Director Wayne Silver, at the Graduation ceremony. The students are pictured with Wayne and tutors Mike Swain and Keith Thompson.

Rose Jackson, commented on the placement experience which included organising an awards event at the Houses of Parliament. “The opportunity of a placement year initially attracted me to the course at LJMU. I thought it was a great option to be able to gain industry experience. And that decision as paid off, I’ve been offered a job that is higher than ‘entry-level’ because of this placement experience.


Image of Dr Noel Robert

Receiving an Honorary Fellowship in the afternoon ceremony was Datuk Dr. Noel Robert - Principal and Director of YPC International College, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. For outstanding contribution to international education focusing primarily on the lower income group in Malaysia. LJMU's partnership with YPC was ten years old last year, marked by a visit from the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor. His citation was presented by Peter Byers.  He is pictured with his daughter Farrah, who graduated today with a PhD that assessed student attitudes to higher education service measures in Malaysia with a view to developing a framework for Private Higher Education Institutes.

During his acceptance speech, Dr Robert said:

“I am truly humbled to receive this honour. I wish to share it with my colleagues at YPC college, as this is all about team work and this is a shared effort.”

He spoke of his career in discovering the value of education: “Education is blind to your background and your circumstances, but with a good education it gives you the currency of the world and global opportunities."

He acknowledged the partnership between LJMU and YPC College in his concluding remarks, saying :”The support we get from LJMU is over and above what we deserve and we are forever grateful.”

Read the full oration for Datuk Dr. Noel Robert


For more student stories and photos visit the LJMU Facebook page


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