Sheffield Hallam graduation fortnight generates £3.4million benefit to city

28th November 2022

Students and their families attending Sheffield Hallam University graduation ceremonies have generated £3.4m for city centre businesses.

The figure has been revealed as the University’s annual graduation fortnight draws to a close. More than 31,000 guests accompanied 8,400 students to 34 ceremonies held at Ponds Forge between Monday 14 November and Friday 25 November.

Academics in the University’s Sheffield Business School calculated the significant benefit to the city’s economy based on estimates that over 75 per cent of graduates and their guests had a celebratory meal out in Sheffield, with approximately 50 per cent staying the night in a local hotel.

Professor Sir Chris Husbands, Vice-Chancellor, Sheffield Hallam University: “This year’s graduation ceremonies have been a huge success and I would like to thank everyone who contributed to making them so special for graduates and their families.

“It is always a delight for me to chat to attendees before and after the ceremonies, and to understand just how important graduation, and the University, is to them. I wish them the very best for what the future holds.”

Alongside the Class of 2022 graduating students, Sheffield Hallam also awarded honorary doctorates to a number of leading industry figures who embody the University’s values of inclusivity, social mobility and transforming lives.

The Chair of the Commission on Young Lives and former Children’s Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield CBE, received an honorary doctorate for dedication to improving support for children and families.

Anne has worked tirelessly with government administrations for over three decades to shape and improve support for young people.

Anne Longfield CBE said: “It is a huge honour to accept this award from Sheffield Hallam in recognition of my work campaigning for children and families. I have long been an admirer of Sheffield Hallam as an outstanding university, with social mobility and inclusivity at its heart and its excellent and ground-breaking work on health.”

The University also recognised the Peak District Mountain Rescue Organisation (PDMRO), which consists of nine teams, for their "outstanding and sustained contribution to public safety" over 58 years.

Last year, the teams responded to almost 500 requests for assistance across the region.Matt Dooley, chairman for the PDMRO charity, said he was "honoured" to accept the award on behalf of the volunteers and teams.

Other recipients of honorary doctorate awards from the University this year include:

  • Geri Halliwell-Horner in recognition of her commitment to raising the aspirations of children and young people, advocating for women’s rights and an outstanding contribution to the music industry over the last 25 years
  • TV presenter, broadcaster and Sheffield Hallam alum Ayo Akinwolere
  • Maddy Desforges OBE, chief executive officer at National Association for Voluntary and Community Action.  
  • Lord Simon Stevens, former chief executive of the NHS
  • Sheffield’s most senior civil judge his Honour Judge Graham Robinson;
  • the first woman to take the role of the Lady Usher of the Black Rod in the House of Lords and former director of Wimbledon Sarah Clarke OBE
  • Judy Simons, the first woman professor at Sheffield Hallam University
  • Carly Jones MBE, an autism advocate who has dedicated her career to increasing the visibility of autistic people, particularly women and girls, also receive honorary doctorate awards this year.  

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