Bury College University Centre’s Graduation Ceremony this November saw over 280 students graduate, from the classes of both 2020 and 2021. The Ceremony was a welcome opportunity to celebrate the exceptional achievements of every graduate.

Graduates were joined by their friends, families, and tutors in two prestigious ceremonies at the Met Theatre in Bury.

Before each ceremony, the graduates and the platform party took part in a graduation parade through the centre of Bury, starting from the Bury College University Centre building, and ending at the Met Theatre. Led by local band Back Chat Brass, the parade attracted the attention of passers-by, who were delighted by the gowned graduates, taking photos and congratulating them. 

The graduates paraded into the Met Theatre and take their seats, closely followed by the platform party. The ceremony began with a Welcome Address from Charlie Deane, Principal and Chief Executive of Bury College, who introduced the recipient of this year’s Bury College University Centre Honorary Award, Dawn Fidler, CEO and founder of The Joshua Wilson Brain Tumour Charity. Dawn founded the charity with her son Josh when he was thirteen, and has continued it on in his legacy since his passing, supporting local children and their families with brain tumours or post-surgery disabilities. The Honorary Award celebrates Dawn’s exceptional contribution to the Bury community.

Dawn said, “It is an honour to be recognised with an Honorary Award and to have the work SuperJosh do in the community celebrated in this way. I would like to offer my congratulations to all the graduates and wish them all the best for the future.”

At the morning ceremony, Dawn’s acceptance speech was followed by an address from the Deputy Mayor and a keynote address from Professor Brian Webster-Henderson, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Health, Environment and Innovation) of the University of Cumbria.

The Keynote address in the afternoon ceremony was delivered by Dr Lynn Senior, Consortium Director from the University of Huddersfield.

After the ceremony, the graduates and their guests were invited to a drinks reception and canapes to celebrate their achievements.

One of the celebrating graduates was Courtney Henderson, who achieved a First Class Honours Degree in BA Hons Beauty Management. Since completing her course, Courtney has set up her own beauty therapy and massage business called ByCourt.

Courtney said, “I really enjoyed my course, the tutors were so helpful and the support they gave me throughout the course was amazing. Even throughout COVID and online teaching, they went above and beyond to make sure we had all the resources we needed. I am really proud and shocked to have got a First.”

Lisa Matthews, Curriculum Director for Higher Education, said, “We are immensely proud of our graduates and their achievements, and wish them the best of luck as they continue on in their careers or further their education. The College’s University Centre is located in the centre of Bury - very much at the heart of our community, making it an accessible place of learning, development and growth. The celebrated success of our students is testament to the vision and commitment of our staff and governors and we remain ambitious and committed to the cause”.