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Thursday 13 September 2018

On Saturday 8 September more than 60 alumni and guests, from graduation years spanning from 1959 to 2018, gathered to re-live their student days while catching up with old friends and acquaintances. 

During the day alumni and guests - hosted by current academics, staff and students - toured the campus, and got hands-on with a selection of activities.

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Highlights included: a behind the scenes tour of Re:So, the first fully-fledged student enterprise space to open in a UK shopping centre; a staged crime scene complete with a body; and an interactive cooking class with academics from our new BSc (Hons) Applied Human Nutrition course in our purpose-built labs.

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The day was rounded off with a gala dinner hosted by Professor Graham Baldwin, Vice-Chancellor of the University, followed by an after party featuring live music from a current student and an alumnus. During the dinner honorary graduate, alumnus and BBC's The Apprentice finalist, Richard Woods, spoke about his time at Solent, and the difference alumni can make by giving back to  the University.

As part of the evening, Professor Graham Baldwin announced that thanks to philanthropic donations from our alumni in attendance and through the sale of university merchandise, we were able to launch our Local Student Bursary Scheme. This will support the next generation of students to follow in the footsteps of our alumni. 

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The Local Student Bursary Scheme enables students from the local community and disadvantaged backgrounds to access Solent University’s first-class facilities, award-winning teaching, employability-focused and industry-led courses, preparing them for success after graduation. Southampton is a city which faces deprivation; in fact, the city is the 67th most deprived local authority out of 326. It’s proven that graduates are healthier, happier, earn more and are more likely to volunteer than non-graduates. All factors which help beat deprivation, especially as 40% of our graduates stay in the region.

In autumn this year we will award our first £1,000 bursary to one local student. Over the next year we aim, through fundraising, to secure enough support to fund 20 bursaries in 2019/20.

If you are interested in finding out more about the Local Student Bursary Scheme or wish to make a donation, please go to our website.

More photos from the alumni reunion and gala dinner can be found on the alumni Facebook page.

For more information on our alumni community, check out our website. We have upcoming alumni events in Germany and Nigeria later this year.