Our first matriculation ceremony took place at Lincoln Cathedral on Thursday, 8 October 2015 and observed all splendour of an official University ceremony, with undergraduates invited to wear black gowns while postgraduate students and University staff had the option of donning full academic dress. The atmosphere mirrored that of a graduation ceremony, an event with which matriculation is intrinsically linked, each serving to bookend the students’ time at BGU.
The ceremony began with a procession of University staff followed by a welcome from The Very Revd Phillip Buckler, the Dean of Lincoln Cathedral. The proceedings continued with contributions from several senior members of University staff, including our Chancellor, Dame Judith Mayhew-Jonas and our Vice Chancellor, Revd Canon Professor Peter Neil.
Central to the ceremony was the subscribing of the Matriculation Book by the University Registrar and Secretary, Dr Anne Craven, marking the moment that new students are formally admitted to the University. Following this students were invited to shake hands with their neighbours and extend a welcome to each other, an invitation which was warmly accepted by all.
Other contributions included an oration from Jack Cunningham, Academic Coordinator for Theology at BGU and an address by Lord Cormack, Chairman of the Historic Lincoln Trust. Both focussed on the work and achievements of Robert Grosseteste (8 October also being Robert Grosseteste Day) and St. Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln 1186-1200, with the observation that BGU students are indeed standing on the shoulders of giants.
Matriculating students were each presented with a Pilgrim Badge, in celebration of the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta, before the ceremony was closed by the Chancellor. Students exited the Cathedral flanked by members of the academic staff and announced by Lincoln’s town crier before congregating on the cobbles outside for a group photograph.
The afternoon was a great success, enjoyed by students and staff alike and proved a fantastic start to what is set become a long-standing tradition. We’d like to wish all our new students the very best of luck with their studies here at BGU.