Around 730 students gathered at the Usher Hall for a day of celebration at Edinburgh College’s annual Graduation ceremony yesterday.
Students were joined by more than 3,000 proud family members and friends who watched as their loved ones stepped on to the stage to receive their certificates of achievement.
Graduates from across the college’s curriculum were honoured during three ceremonies throughout the day, graduating in subjects across each of the college’s faculties: Engineering and Built Environment; Creative Industries; Tourism, Hospitality and Business; and Health, Wellbeing and Social Science.
School students from the South East Scotland Academies partnership (SESAP) also graduated. SESAP is a partnership led by Queen Margaret University and Edinburgh College in collaboration with City of Edinburgh Council, East Lothian Council, Midlothian Council, Scottish Borders Council, Borders College and industry partners – which gives senior school students experience of college, university and the workplace while in secondary education.
Guest speaker Professor Alice Brown CBE, chair of the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), gave a speech before students collected their scrolls. In her last public engagement before retiring from her role as Chair of the SFC she told graduates how she began her career studying at Stevenson College (one of the three colleges which merged to form Edinburgh College in 2012) and noted how it was a fitting end to her career to be speaking at the ceremonies.
Edinburgh College’s Depute Principal Alex Craig and Chair of the Board of Management Ian McKay also addressed the audience during the ceremonies.
Across the three ceremonies, the college’s best-performing students were commended by Principal Annette Bruton and Chair of the Board of Management Ian McKay, receiving awards for academic excellence.
Prizes were also awarded to exceptional students by the college’s graduation robing company, Marston, and college partners including the Scottish Qualifications Authority, NHS Lothian and The Merchant Company of Edinburgh.
College teaching staff were also presented with professional development awards during the ceremonies.
Principal Annette Bruton closed each ceremony with words of encouragement for the class of 2017, she said: “Graduation is a special occasion as it is the culmination of all of our students’ hard work and dedication. It is a day for celebrating everything they have achieved with the people who have supported them through their studies.
“It was an honour to present this year’s graduates with their scrolls and to hear their plans for the future. On behalf of the college’s governing body, management team, tutors and support staff, I would like to congratulate them on their success and wish them the very best for the future as they progress in their further studies and chosen careers.
“Well done to our class of 2017.