New Sunderland University Chancellor Emeli Sandé to present honorary awards at graduation

Brit Award-winning singer Emeli Sandé will be taking to the pitch at the Stadium of Light next month to present university honours to five lucky recipients.

By Debra Fox
Thursday, 27 June, 2019, 10:24
Singer and Sunderland University Chancellor Emeli Sande outside Buckingham Palace with her MBE. Picture: PA.

Emeli, who was named as Sunderland University’s new chancellor in May, will hand out honorary awards to five distinguished figures from July 8 to 12 at their annual graduation ceremonies.

They are singer, songwriter and teacher Martin Longstaff, better know as The Lake Poets; the Right Reverend Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, Bishop of Ripon; Darren Henley OBE, Chief Executive Arts Council England; Mitch Mitchell MBE QVS, Major General in the British Army and singer, songwriter and campaigner Nadine Shah.

Martin, whose music was brought onto the world stage with Netflix’s documentary Sunderland 'Til I Die, graduated from the university with a degree in Primary Education in 2012.

He will receive an Honorary Fellowship alongside musician and campaigner Nadine Shah, who was shortlisted for the Mercury Prize for her third album in 2018.

As well as her music, Nadine campaigns on mental health and inequality issues.

Mr Henley is a member of the Government's Creative Industries Council and a member of the UK Council of the Creative Industries Federation. He was awarded an OBE in 2013 for services to music.

Clockwise from top left, Mitch Mitchell MBE QVS, Martin Longstaff and Nadine Shah.

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The university and city’s close links with the military will be celebrated when Mitch Mitchell MBE QVS, a Major General in the British Army receives an Honorary Doctor of Technology.

Also honoured will be The Right Reverend Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, Bishop of Ripon, who will be given an Honorary Doctorate of Education.

The honoraries will be joined by almost 3,000 graduates receiving awards as the summer begins. Around 12,000 are expected to attend the Academic Awards at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light.

University of Sunderland Vice-Chancellor Sir David Bell KBE said: "I am delighted to play tribute to those who are receiving honorary awards at this summer’s graduation ceremonies.

The Right Reverend Dr Helen-Ann Hartley and Darren Henley OBE.

“Without exception, they have all made a significant contribution in their chosen field of work.

“Not only that, they are an inspiration to our graduates who are celebrating their academic success before embarking on the next phase of life.”