Some recipients gave speeches, including Gerry McDonnell-Fletcher, a second-year BSc(Hons) in Computer Science student who spoke about his merit scholarship: “I want to take a moment to thank every single person in this room for making this possible. It's delightful to know the university actively recognises the hard work that students put in, and it's so motivating to be a recipient.”
Nadage Sabatier, now in her final year on the BA(Hons) in Education, won a merit scholarship and a Breakthrough Award and told the audience that she “…chose to come to the University of Brighton because it has a fantastic reputation and my experience confirms this. I am very grateful to the staff who work on my degree, their humanistic approach is truly inspirational. Receiving the award has made a difference for me because English is not my mother tongue and achieving high grades and being given an award exceeded my expectations.”
Fatma Al Khalifin, an international scholarship recipient from Oman who has recently started a Masters in Philosophy of Language, said: “A scholarship is not just about the financial support, it’s a message of appreciation, encouragement and all sorts of support for the learner.”
Guest of Honour was Maureen Chowen, High Sheriff of East Sussex. Maureen and her husband, Michael Chowen CBE DL, are long-standing supporters of the university and the Brighton and Sussex Medical School, and have donated to a number of research projects, to nursing in developing countries and to the recent British Science Festival.
Maureen said: “What we enjoy most as donors is the opportunity to become involved with so many different projects and to help a wide range of students and staff. Universities – and especially the University of Brighton – work on a variety of very important matters, ones that are so relevant to the challenges faced by society today.”