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Around 1,500 graduates returned a year after they finished their degrees to celebrate at their in-person graduation ceremonies.

By Matthew Little (Communications Officer), Published (Updated )

The class of 2020 had their original ceremonies delayed due to the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and had previously marked the occasion at online graduation celebrations.

Swapping Zoom parties at home for in-person celebrations at The Barbican Centre in London, graduates from all five of City’s Schools reunited with course mates, lecturers, families and friends as they reflected on the end of their undergraduate journeys.

To ensure the ceremonies were carried out safely, the auditorium operated at a reduced capacity, attendees were encouraged to wear face coverings and graduates doffed their caps instead of shaking hands.

The six ceremonies spread over three days also invited Professor Anthony Finkelstein to celebrate with students at his first in-person graduation event as City’s President.

My most important suggestion for your practice is to learn something new every day. More accurately what I am asking you to do is to take a moment from the day and call to mind one new thing you have learnt that day. Think about it and give it a mental tick.

As you graduate from City, know how proud we are of you. We aim to make you ever more proud of us. We look forward to a lasting relationship and to your future engagement.

– President Professor Anthony Finkelstein

Six graduates who made the short walk across the stage were selected as student speaker for their ceremonies, where they spoke about their journeys, memories of City and what they have been up to since finishing their courses last year.

Representing the School of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering was student speaker Raffi Maurer (BSc Computer Science 2020), who spoke about the power of technology in his speech.

Raffi Maurer (BSc Computer Science 2020)
Raffi Maurer (BSc Computer Science 2020),

Being here some 15 months after our official graduation is a majorly significant occasion, and it is wonderful to be finally gathered for this auspicious occasion as the world begins to heal from the tribulations of the past two years.

It is vital to remember that information is not necessarily wisdom, a video call is not always a dialogue, a follower not always a friend, and a like not always a friendly smile. The human soul and experience are decidedly analogue.

Our connection and cooperation with others are what animate us. Our interaction with the physical world is what inspires us. As such, rather than an unmoderated commitment to the digitisation of all that we know, we must be guided by a desire to combine the technological with the human.

– Raffi Maurer (BSc Computer Science 2020)

Speaking for Bayes Business School was Pei Yi Ellie Goh (BSc Banking and International Finance 2020), who marked City’s first in-person graduation since changing the name of its Business School.

Pei Yi Ellie Goh (BSc Banking and International Finance 2020)
Pei Yi Ellie Goh (BSc Banking and International Finance 2020)

Just as Bayes’ Theorem suggests, we get closer to the truth by constantly updating our beliefs in proportion to the weight of new evidence.

Every step you take, every triumph, every fallback, adds a new piece onto the jigsaw puzzle called our future. Sometimes you feel lost – you feel that you’ve messed up. Several days passed and you’re convinced that the puzzle is impossible to complete. Suddenly, you stumbled onto a piece that had fallen to the ground – it was the missing piece to complete your enigma.

Sometimes all you need is to fearlessly wander in the woods and put things in perspective. No step is ever wasted, just like any setback. And who knows, you might just become the very best version of yourself in the process!

– Pei Yi Ellie Goh (BSc Banking and International Finance 2020)

You can see all of the graduation action on City’s official social media channels. The hashtag is #CityGrad and you can still share your pictures and memories of graduation on social media.

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