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Honorary shares humanitarian message with new graduates

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Composer and humanitarian Professor Nigel Osborne MBE encouraged Liverpool Hope’s latest graduates to take the University’s human message with them as they move forward in life. 

Speaking as he accepted his Doctor of Humane Letters (honoris causa) honorary degree award at Thursday’s graduation, Professor Osborne described his hope that this generation will bring about change for the better. 

Describing them as a ‘special generation’, Professor Osborne talked of his experience as an aid worker looking after young volunteers who are ‘creative, positive, and realistic’ in their approach to life. 

“They know what they are doing and why”, he said, explaining that this generation has the potential to ‘change Britain for the better’, and must take it in hand with ‘generosity, creativity and hope’.

Reflecting on how it felt to receive the honorary doctorate, Professor Osborne said: “When you spend your life doing the things I do, sometimes alone and in distant places out of the eye of any kind of public - sometimes difficult things - the idea that this humanitarian action might be recognised is extremely gratifying and a lovely reward for the years spent doing things often alone and in difficult places.

“I come from a mixed Protestant/Catholic family with roots in Manchester and Glasgow, so I’m very conscious of the history of this University and sympathetic to its aims. I know Liverpool very well, as I was partly brought up in Merseyside and spent a lot of time here in the music scene as a young man. 

“I feel like the City has retained much of its character and, much like Glasgow, it’s a place with quick wit and repartee, and where at times life is lived on the edge.”

Professor Osborne has a special connection with one of Liverpool Hope’s own academics, having been Professor Stephen Davismoon, Dean of the School of Creative and Performing Arts’, PhD supervisor during his studies at the University of Edinburgh. 

“I’m very proud of the wonderful composer he’s become and to see him running such a wonderful School here at the University,” Professor Osborne said.

See pictures from Thursday's Graduation celebrations 

Published on 22/07/2022