Durham University has held its first online graduation ceremony. The University released a video of the Conferral Ceremony on their YouTube channel, where students are awarded their degrees.
In the video, Professor Stuart Corbridge, the University’s Vice-Chancellor apologised to students who missed out on “a full Durham experience this year”, and commended this years graduates for completing their degrees in a time of “distress and pain”.
Professor Corbridge reassured students that “we will go back to normal”, and highlighted some of the areas in which Durham University has been at the forefront of combatting Covid-19, including research carried out by the biosciences department into whether dogs can be used to detect Covid-19, and research carried out by the humanities faculty into breathlessness.
The Vice-Chancellor stated that Durham is a “positive university”, and spoke with pride about the 100,000 volunteering hours that the University has given to the local Durham community this year.
The ceremony concluded with a message from Sir Thomas Allen, the University’s Chancellor, where he called for “patience and forbearance” until the virus subsides.
Some colleges held their own graduation celebrations. In a video message to this year’s graduates, University College’s new principal, Dr. Wendy Powers, congratulated the “tenacious, persistent, and resilient graduates”, and called on graduates to “embrace life’s mysteries” and “wrestle with the difficult questions of our time”.
St John’s College Principal, Reverend Professor David Wilkinson, also congratulated graduates via a video message, for completing their degrees in these “extraordinary times”.
Grey College and Trevelyan College also held their own virtual graduation celebrations at the end of July.
Following social distancing regulations put in place by the government, the University made the decision in September to postpone this year’s summer graduation ceremony.
The Summer graduation ceremony is now scheduled to take place on the week beginning April 12th 2021.
Image: Durham University