Yesterday was the Summer Solstice which marked the longest day in the calendar and the beginning of summer here in the UK. It also marked the outstanding achievement of the College for picking up the Innovations Award at the Alpha Plus Celebration Evening for the Leadership & Management of eLearning. The winner, Saqib Safdar, our Head of eLearning and tech guru, is transforming the College’s approach to technology and education and is building a digitally literate community, who understand what is needed for 21st century pedagogy. Well done to Saqib and his team for #futureproofingeducation.
Speaking of buildings, our departing Y13 and Y14 students today attended the College’s inaugural Graduation Ceremony at one of the most iconic buildings in the world, The Houses of Parliament which was built back in 1016 and is the beating heart of British democracy.
The students processed across Westminster Bridge in their formal caps and gowns with a police escort and looked splendid in their academic regalia. The buildings and surroundings of the Palace of Westminster were inspirational and this opportunity turned out to be an unforgettable experience for our students and their parents where our host The Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP and the CEO of Alpha Plus, Mark Hanley- Browne, presented the awards to our graduating students. We are the first College in the UK (I think in the world) to have graduated from the Palace of Westminster, we therefore created history today. Our Y13 and Y14 students were part of something very special which I hope they will cherish with their family and friends for years to come. They are pioneers and trailblazers who will leave behind a strong andcompelling legacy for future DLD students. As alumni of DLD, I hope that they will use the skills and knowledge acquired at College, as well as the values learnt, to make the world a better place. The alumni badge which the students designed themselves, is testimony to that entrepreneurial spirit and I would hope that they keep in touch with the College.
The stunning End of Year Art Exhibition which followed the Graduation this afternoon, was a reflection of the high quality work and creativity that is nurtured here. The talent is breath-taking and it is such a privilege to be a part of this. My thanks to Ed McCool, Jonathan Parkhouse, Ben Clements and the Art Department for all their work in curating and displaying this magnificent show. And I hope that this sense of creativity continues to develop and grow here at College, much like the digital revolution that is happening in our futuristic building which was only built in 2015. A healthy respect for the past but always looking forward to develop, lead and diversify.