Members of the public invited to enjoy UCW’s ‘biggest and best ever’ graduation celebrations

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More than 500 students will graduate from University Centre Weston (UCW) on Saturday September 23 and hundreds more are expected to follow proceedings from the town’s Italian Gardens.

A 4 metre by 3 metre screen will be erected in the Italian Gardens for the day, with the ceremonies in St John the Baptist Church also streamed live on the UCWeston Facebook page.

Viewers will get to watch the students collect their degree scrolls, see the traditional mortarboard toss, and enjoy inspiring speeches from Weston College Group Principal and Chief Executive Dr Paul Phillips CBE and BBC News presenter Sophie Long.

Those who attend the screening in the Italian Gardens will also be able to watch the processions of students on Knightstone Road, which will be led by The Street Dixie Band, and be entertained by Weston Brass Band.

The students and their more than 1,500 guests will celebrate their achievements with a private drinks reception in the redeveloped Winter Gardens Pavilion.

Dr Phillips said: “Although we will always make sure that graduation is focused on celebrating the wonderful successes of our students, we are delighted that people in Weston and all around the world will be able to enjoy the ceremonies.

“This has been a year to remember for UCW, with our students achieving fantastic results and our teaching, learning and outcomes being recognised with a prestigious Teaching Excellence Framework Gold award.

“It is therefore fitting that this year’s graduation will be the biggest and best ever.”

Among those graduating will be the nearly half of this year’s Contemporary Art and Professional Studies Honours students who have achieved First Class degrees.

Around a quarter of this year’s Applied Computing, Business Management with Sustainability, Professional Music Performance and Production and Public and Environmental Health Honours students have also achieved the top grade.

North Somerset Council’s redesigned Italian Gardens and the Weston College Group’s multimillion pound redevelopment of the Winter Gardens Pavilion are part of the ongoing regeneration and modernisation of the traditional seaside town of Weston-super-Mare.

UCW delivers its more than 45 degree-level courses in partnership with Bath Spa University and UWE Bristol.