We were delighted that so many of you could join us online from across the globe to celebrate your achievements in these most unusual of times.
Although your time as a York student may have come to an end, you are now part of a friendly and inspiring community of over 130,000 York alumni across more than 180 countries.
Keep scrolling to find out more about your York Global Alumni Association membership and enjoy just some of the many highlights from your online graduation.
"You will now be remembered as the generation that demonstrated extraordinary resilience, creativity and compassion in overcoming one of the greatest challenges any of us have ever experienced.
Your inspirational responses to the events of 2020 reveal the strength of a York community of shared purpose and determination to respond positively to such difficult circumstances."
While the ceremony was virtual, the excitement was real
A huge congratulations everyone graduating this week! Our @UniOfYork Global Alumni Association can't wait to welcome you 🤗— UoY Alumni (@UoYAlumni) August 24, 2020
Find out more about becoming an alumni of York: https://t.co/4gPzes6PAt pic.twitter.com/B9SBsVgHSv
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So, tomorrow is the big day. This hasn't been an easy journey, but you've finally made it! As of midday tomorrow, you're officially a graduate of the University of York. No matter where you're going, you can walk with your head held high. We're proud of you, and we're with you every step of the way. Special thanks to Jerry and Suzanne, who took these brilliant photos wearing the traditional dress of China and Bhutan respectively. Nobody can say that Environment and Geography students don't know how to graduate in style. #graduation2020 #proudparents #uoygraduation
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🎉🎉To celebrate @uniofyork graduation next week and the Class of 2020, here are some wise words from alum Glynis, who graduated over 50 years ago: "The celebration ceremony might not be perfect, but the important thing is that you are graduating, which is an amazing achievement at the best of times, so to graduate during a global pandemic is epic!! Enjoy the rest of your life, Carpe Diem!" #UoYGraduation #Classof2020 #UoYAlumni #YorkUnlimited #UniversityofYork #UniofYork #UoYCommunity #York #Heslington #NorthEngland #HigherEducation #University
Packed up the house that I lived in for the last 2 years of my undergrad just in time for my online #UoYGraduation tomorrow. Reminiscing about my undergraduate experience, but also excited for the big new things to come!— Ruhee Dawood (@ruheedawood4) August 27, 2020
Pro of virtual graudtion: it starts in 43 minutes and I'm still in bed— Jack (@thatmathsnerd) August 28, 2020
We were also treated to messages from some old friends...
Professor AR Ravishankara, Richard Henderson, Professor Dame Anne M Johnson and Dr Mark Addy were just some of the many honorary graduates who took the time to congratulate our graduands.
The main event
Living rooms and home offices across the globe became a stand-in for Central Hall as you gathered with your families, friends and supporters
Mary Haworth, Director of the University's Office Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni, welcomed graduands and introduced the Chancellor, Professor Sir Malcolm Grant.
" I know that you will, forever, have a favourite spot in your hearts for what you experienced at York. For the friendships that you made, for the tuition that you received, and for the opportunities it gave you to thrive in your future careers."
Presentation of candidates
Professor Brian Fulton, Sciences Faculty Dean, announced and awarded graduands from each department.
Student orator speech
Sasha Sequeira (Environment and Geography) moved the audience with their inspiring speech to fellow faculty members.
"It’s now our duty to carry York’s sense of community forward, to combine our potential with our resilience, and help our world."
"Carolyn Bertozzi is one of the world’s leading scientific visionaries, but behind the scientist is also a person - one who has fought her whole life for LGBT+ people to be treated with equal dignity and rights."
"It’s your generation that has always taught everyone who’s come before you, what the future looks like, what the future should look like, and what a just society looks like. I feel that we’re moving towards that vision and I’m really excited to see where you all take the rest of us."
Closing declaration by the Vice-Chancellor
"We look forward to hearing about your contribution to the public good that’s a special feature of being part of our community at the University of York. Please keep in touch."
Familiar faces from our honorary graduate community made surprise appearances with their messages for this year's graduands
"If COVID-19 has taught us anything it is that anything can happen. We must expect the unexpected and do our best to prepare for it in advance. A university degree is just such a preparation. It gives you the skills you need to be able to turn your hand to whatever opportunities come your way."
"We have work to do. You have work to do, and we will do it together, with hope and truth at our side, because out of these dark days must come a better world."
And finally, our students closed the proceedings with a special performance coordinated by the Students' Union and York Student Television
We loved seeing your celebrations
Thank you to everyone who shared their day with us on social media.
Tuned into @UniOfYork Faculty of Sciences #UoYgraduation to celebrate our 2020 @ChemistryatYork #AvestroGroup #MolMatYork graduates @Rob_A_Ives #MChem and @ruheedawood4 #BSc, who are both picking up prestigious University & Dept awards today for their high merit & achievement! pic.twitter.com/F7oY0x7AOK— Alyssa Avestro, PhD (@ajavestro) August 28, 2020
Today is my (virtual) graduation. After 3 years hard graft to achieve a PhD, it's disappointing not to graduate in person with my friends, family and colleagues, but at least I won't worry about this little lady needing a feed mid-ceremony. @HealthSciYork @UniOfYork @PhDSurvival pic.twitter.com/oZfN5BOw0b— Sarah Masefield (@SCMasefield) August 28, 2020
"I'm graduating with a BA in Social Policy @spsw at age 51. Age is just a number and after a life-changing event I came to uni to understand policy making... the Uni of York has given me the strength to create a new me" - congrats on your #UoYGraduation Gail! 🎓 #HumansOfYork pic.twitter.com/nBgfK9s6ko— University of York (@UniOfYork) August 27, 2020
" I want to thank the Mature Student Network - Nicola and Tamlyn - for allowing me to work for them for the last three years to ensure mature students feel welcome at York."
If you're a friend, family member or supporter who has been inspired by our graduates and is considering a return to education, you may be interested in our free online courses including our course for mature learners.
You are now part of a global network of alumni
This isn't the end...
We want to bring you back onto campus to celebrate as soon as it is safe to do so. Please make sure your details are up-to-date so we can get in touch.
This is only the beginning
The York Global Alumni Association is our community of inspiring passionate, dedicated graduates around the world - and that now includes you!
Access our support
- Networking opportunities and other events
- Dedicated international groups across the globe
- Exclusive services, discounts and offers
- Regular news and updates via our alumni newsletter
- Get ongoing help from our Careers and Placements team
"You get to make a lot of new contacts with experiences and viewpoints that enrich your life and career – people you wouldn't have connected with without the ties of the University."
Find out how to follow in the footsteps of other alumni
"I graduated during a recession and have certainly experienced tough times. What I have learned from this is that some organisations won’t survive, this is usually because their products or service are out of date or irrelevant, and these are replaced by more innovative organisations and whole new sectors can be created."
Become a Class of 2020 Peer Mentor
We're seeking a group of mentors from the Class of 2020 to provide peer support to fellow graduates, easing the transition into work or further study. Mentors will gain access to an exclusive programme of training and networking opportunities designed to develop their coaching, leadership, influencing and facilitation skills.
Be part of York Unlimited
Over 200 students of our Class of 2020 received donor-funded scholarships or awards.
Visit the York Unlimited page to find out how you can:
- volunteer time by becoming a Regional Coordinator for our global alumni network
- support Global Giving Day 2020 by becoming a Giving Day Ambassador