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Students celebrate at first of their kind online City graduations

City, University of London students celebrated their academic success at first of their kind online graduations.

by Matthew Little (Communications Officer)

Roughly 5,200 people comprising graduates, friends and their proud families from across the world celebrated their online graduations which were beamed through to their homes.

On a year like no other, six students were also invited to record short messages detailing their memories of City and their aspirations for the future.

Representing the School of Arts & Social Sciences was Liam Baily (BA English 2020). He said “Some people may tell us 2020 is the worst year in recent history to graduate. However, I disagree. I believe 2020 is the best year to graduate.

“Never has our world needed us more than it does today. It needs our voices, our experiences, our skills, our degrees and our diversity. Never has it needed us more to dream big.

“As you go forward in your careers, take with you the knowledge that you have acquired at City and use it to make that all-important difference, however big or small.

“Remember the determination and courage you have shown to make it to this point. You’re the graduate that took on a global pandemic and won.”Liam Baily (BA English 2020)

Liam Baily (BA English 2020)

Reflecting on such an important time for the NHS, student speaker from the School of Health and Social Sciences, Stacey Reed (BSc Optometry 2020) said “Lockdown has given me time to reflect, especially at 8pm on Thursdays when the streets filled with appreciation for the NHS.

“I am so proud of and grateful for all NHS workers and especially all who leapt straight out of your final years to face Coronavirus yourselves, you are amazing!

“Today we turn a page into the next chapter of our lives, one that we have been excitedly preparing for since we first started in education.

“I hope we can face it with the bravery and determination with which we graduated, because if we have done that, we can do anything.”Stacey Reed (BSc Optometry 2020)

Stacey Reed (BSc Optometry 2020)

The celebrations also included messages from President, Professor Sir Paul Curran; Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal, Chancellor of the University of London: Saqlain Riaz, Students’ Union President; and the Deans the Schools.

Sir Paul said “Graduation is the high point in City’s calendar and although the circumstances are unusual, it remains a great privilege for me to congratulate you, as you leave as City graduates to make your way in the world.

“You will leave City as a graduate and forge your own path in life, but at some point I am sure you will look back over your shoulder and when you do I can guarantee that City will have progressed.

“You will see new buildings, exciting programmes and an absolute commitment to that higher form of education where one learns from those who themselves are learning”.


You can watch all of the online graduations here. As part of the celebration, City staff and alumni recorded messages of congratulations to all of our graduates.

You can also continue to share your memories of graduation using the hashtag #CityClassof2020.

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