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Arden University celebrates graduation ceremony with special honorary guests


Arden University will celebrate its second graduation ceremony on Wednesday 10 July, honouring the achievements of its students. Among them will be honorary graduates, Neville Staple of The Specials and former Chief Constable, Michael Fuller.

Graduands will be welcomed to Coventry Cathedral for the ceremony, presided by Arden University Vice-Chancellor Professor Carl Lygo who will commend students for their success and dedication.

Following his appointment in April 2019, Carl is set to share his vision for the university as well as making a pledge to plant one tree for each student that graduates with them. As one of the fastest growing universities in the UK, Arden will also be opening two additional study centres in the UK and will double the number of faculty staff.

As part of the ceremony, Arden will also recognise the outstanding achievements of two honorary graduates. Coventry-based musician and anti-knife crime campaigner, Neville Staple will receive an honorary degree for his efforts to defuse racial tension through innovation and music. Most recently, Neville has dedicated his time to promoting anti-knife crime, working with various groups and youth projects following the fatal stabbing of his 21-year-old grandson in 2018.

Neville said: “It is a great honour to be chosen as an Arden honorary graduate because I really admire the values of this university and the pledges it makes. My wife has been saying for a long time, that she would like to see me recognised for my own working values, skills and longevity so it has come as a great surprise, to come from a university like Arden. It also shows that they look at real life talents, not just academic talents. Thank you – you have made this long-time rude boy very proud.” 

Michael Fuller will receive his honorary doctorate for his long-standing commitment to mentoring black officers and community support work. Michael is the first ethnic minority Chief Constable in the UK and spearheaded Operation Trident which successfully tackled gun crime in London. Fuller has risen through the ranks over three decades and has made recommendations for how future high-profile investigations could be improved, such as for the Stephen Lawrence murder inquiry, which were accepted and are still in place now.

He said: “I feel really proud to be receiving an honorary doctorate from Arden University today.  I’m impressed with the ethos and values of the university and wish all who have graduated success in the future.”

Vice-Chancellor Professor Carl Lygo said:

“It is an honour to join with our graduates, their families and friends to celebrate their outstanding achievements. Our mission is to transform lives and it’s an exciting time for our students as they take the next step in their careers and this ceremony is testament to how hard they work with many balancing family commitments and full-time jobs.

“Our honorary graduates are a true inspiration and we’re thrilled to welcome them into our alumni community.”

Experts in online and blended learning, Arden was granted university status in 2015 and offers higher education courses in subjects such as Business and Management, Computing and Data Analytics, Finance, Law, Health and Social Care and Psychology at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. It is now seeking to expand the number of faculty staff and will plant a tree for every student that graduates.

Headquartered in Coventry, Arden University has a total of five study centres across the UK in London, Birmingham and Manchester. This number is set to increase to seven with two additional study centres opening in the next 12 months.

Arden also offers degree apprenticeships at Level 6 and 7 in the areas of Business and Computing, in addition to a range of distance and blended learning courses. All of their courses are career-focused, and many are accredited by professional bodies. 

Michael made recommendations as to how future investigations could be improved,  which were accepted and are still in place now.’

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