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Graduation 2016: Bishop Grosseteste Vice-Chancellor collects degree from Wrexham Glyndwr University


October 26 2016

A university Vice-Chancellor had the unusual experience of accepting a degree from his counterpart at Wrexham Glyndwr University.

Rev Canon Professor Peter Neil, Vice-Chancellor of Bishop Grosseteste University, Lincoln, was presented with a DMin in Religion and Education by Wrexham Glyndwr University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Maria Hinfelaar.

Professor Neil completed the degree over five years via distance learning and residential weekends at the Gladstone Library in Hawarden.

The 54-year-old former modern languages teacher, who started higher education study in 1983 with an MA in German from the University of Edinburgh, said completing the degree showed the importance of learning as a life-long activity.

He said: “I have never stopped learning and I have gained so many skills along the way. I’ve also attended more graduation ceremonies than I care to remember and each one is special for different reasons. This one is a special occasion for me as it marks another landmark in my educational journey.

“I have been on both sides of the platform and the thing I love seeing most of all is the proud look on families’ faces, particularly those who haven’t been to university but get to see their family members graduating.

“Glyndwr occupies a very special place in this area, and in Wales, and it is a privilege to be a student and now a graduate of the university.”

Professor Neil is a former Director of Education and Lifelong Learning at the University of Aberystwyth, the town where he began to study for an Anglican Priesthood through St Michael’s College, Llandaff.

He was ordained in St David’s Diocese in the Church of Wales. Professor Neil was appointed Vice-Chancellor of Bishop Grosseteste University in 2013.

“I am responsible in my day job for ensuring that students are given a good experience so it was good to be able to enjoy a student experience myself,” he said.

“Graduation is always a humbling occasion to realise that we all achieve something for ourselves, but have others such as tutors, family and friends to thank for their part in that achievement.

“Is this my final degree? Some people at graduation say ‘never again,’ but I am always open for opportunities and who knows what opportunities will present themselves.”