Last Monday, 5th November, our Higher Education (HE) graduation ceremony took place at the stylish Orsett Hall in Grays.
Though it was a very busy afternoon, it was also a very successful one that concluded the students’ time at Havering College. All of the blood, sweat and tears paid off for this moment.
College Principal Paul Wakeling commenced proceedings with a welcome and congratulations speech. He said:
The graduation ceremony is the highlight of the College’s Higher Education calendar when, together, we celebrate the achievements of our students. Today’s graduates have worked hard to achieve something very special; most have balanced their studies with busy family lives and demanding jobs.
As well as sharing achievements and sharing the excitement that achievement brings, graduation ceremonies are also a time of reflection on the past and contemplation of the present and a bright future.
Paul’s welcome was followed by a speech from our guest of honour, the truly inspirational Mike Brace CBE, DL. Born in Hackney, Mike lived a normal life until, at the tender age of ten, he was blinded by an exploding firework. Fast forward 50 years, and Mike is a former Paralympic skier, social worker and leader of disabled charities.
His determination and perseverance in the face of adversity was very moving and all in attendance – staff, students and guests – were able to take something from him.
And then it was the moment we had all been waiting for, the award presentations. Pride filled the room as each student went on stage to collect their award, and whilst not all HE students were present, we would like to congratulate every single one of them.
We wish you all the very best for your future.