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Social commentator, presenter and public speaker, Professor Jason Arday, has been awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Arts Today (Friday 14 July).

14th July 2023
Health, psychology and sociologyHomepage - News - Standard

Professor Arday is currently Professor of Sociology of Education at the University of Cambridge – becoming one of the youngest academics ever to hold a full Professorship in Cambridge’s history.

Commenting on his honorary degree, he says, “I would like to extend my sincerest thanks and gratitude to the entire Southampton Solent University family. I am truly humbled and honoured by this prodigious honour. My happiness really lies in the graduands having their hard work recognised and honoured at the Southampton Guildhall. I truly feel fortunate to be in the presence of the graduands on their special day.”

Diagnosed with global development delay and autism spectrum disorder at three years old, he did not speak until he was eleven years old and could not read or write until he was eighteen.

His professorial appointment in July 2021 at the University of Glasgow, made him one of the youngest Professors in the UK. He also holds an Honorary Professorship at Durham University and Visiting Professorships at Ohio State University, University of Glasgow, and Nelson Mandela University.

Jason Arday gowned up ahead of ceremony

Professor Arday is a trustee of the Runnymede Trust, the UK’s leading race equality thinktank, and the British Sociological Association (BSA). He also sits on the Centre for Labour and Social Studies (CLASS) national advisory panel and the NHS Race and Health Observatory Academic Reference Group. Professor Arday is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA). He was appointed to the ITV Cultural Advisory Council in May 2023.

Outside of academia he regularly writes, features, and speaks on issues of race and racism in education and society for publications and broadcasters including, The Guardian, Times Higher Education, BBC, ITV News, CNN and CBS.

Professor Arday also speaks regularly at conferences, parliamentary, public and community events – consulting and advising on race, cultural studies, intersectionality, education and social justice. He has been a special advisor to the Parliaments of England, Wales and Scotland on issues of race and racism.

A prolific fundraiser, Professor Arday has raised over £5 million for 80 charities over an 18-year period, most notably for Shooting Stars Children’s Hospice and Shelter. He has won numerous prestigious national and community awards for fundraising and community engagement achievements. His fundraising achievements include running: 30 marathons in 35 days, 300 miles in three days and 600 miles in six days, culminating in selection to be an Olympic Torch Bearer for the London 2012 Olympics. Professor Arday has been nominated twice for The Mirror’s Pride of Britain Fundraiser of the Year Award.

In April 2023, Professor Arday was nominated for the Powerlist, a list comprising of the most influential 100 Black Britons.