Graduates from Bournemouth University’s Faculty of Management received their degree certificates in ceremonies at the Bournemouth International Centre (BIC) today.
Among them were Honorary Doctorate recipients Peter Long and Andrew Thomson.
Travel industry entrepreneur Peter Long is joint Chief Executive of the world’s largest tour operator TUI and Chairman of the Royal Mail.
He received his Doctor of Business Administration during the morning ceremony, alongside graduates from BU’s tourism and hospitality degree courses.
Peter said: “I’m very touched, I’m very honoured and it feels fantastic.
“I think Bournemouth is very much leading-edge in terms of tourism. At TUI, we have been involved with Bournemouth University for many years and it’s an opportunity for new, potentially talented tourism executives to start their career having graduated and join what, for me, is a fabulous industry that I've spent the past 30 years in."
He added that his advice to the graduating students included getting as much experience as possible in the early years of their career.
He said: “Think what you’re good at, decide what size organisation you want to join, join one that’s growing fast – it may be big, it may be small, it may be domestic or international - and in those early years just be hungry for learning and get as much experience as you can in as many different roles.
"That will ensure that you’re well-placed to enjoy a very successful career in tourism.”
Retail and hospitality entrepreneur Andrew Thomson received his Honorary Doctor of Business Administration award in the afternoon awards ceremony, alongside BU’s business graduates.
Andrew said: “About seven years ago I was asked to attend a function to promote BU’s young entrepreneurs and I was very very impressed with the quality and standards of the students and I was asked to come back and give a lecture to the Business Students.
“I got to know various members of the establishment and out of that I got more and more involved with the university and found that I could support in various ways most of their activities.
“This has now culminated in this great honour that was very kindly bestowed on me today.”
He added that he felt a responsibility to share his advice and experience with the graduating students.
“I think my theme really would be to impress on them that nothing happens unless you work extremely hard – and you need determination, you need to be able to get over failure and get back into that seat again," he said.
“You need to have passion, you need to have talent and you’ve got to persevere and not take no for an answer. At the end of the day an entrepreneur is driven by determination and by strength and energy and you have to keep those ingredients running all the way through your career.”
Over 4,000 students will receive their degrees over six ceremonies at the BIC this week, with Faculty of Science and Technology students graduating on Thursday, and the Faculty of Media and Communication ceremony taking place on Friday.
Professor John Vinney, Vice-Chancellor of Bournemouth University, said: “Graduation is one of my favourite times of year, as it is a chance to stop and celebrate the achievements of our excellent graduates, who have worked hard during their time at BU and thoroughly deserve their awards.
“Many of our graduates have gone on to become top business leaders, work on Oscar-winning films and enrich the communities they live and work in through their successful careers. A degree from Bournemouth University will give you a great start on your career journey and I have no doubt that our latest graduates will go on to be very successful too.”
Watch our round-up video of the atmosphere and excitement around Faculty of Management graduation ceremonies: