View all news

Honorary degrees awarded at the University of Bristol – Monday, 16 July

Michelle McDowell with orator Professor Sally Heslop

Michelle McDowell with orator Professor Sally Heslop Ede and Ravenscroft

Professor Graham Fleming with orator Professor Mike Ashfold

Professor Graham Fleming with orator Professor Mike Ashfold Ede and Ravenscroft

Press release issued: 16 July 2012

Bristol University is awarding honorary degrees to Michelle McDowell and Professor Graham Fleming at today’s degree ceremonies in the Wills Memorial Building.

Michelle McDowell MBE is being honoured with a Doctor of Engineering in recognition of a career which has seen her become one of the country’s most admired civil engineers, leading many high-profile and award-winning projects.

She studied Civil Engineering at Bristol University and graduated in 1984 with the skills she needed to begin her career, which has seen her work on the major refurbishment of the Royal Albert Hall and the BBC’s new regional headquarters in Birmingham.

She was awarded an MBE for services to the construction industry in 2010 and was last year named the Veuve Cliquot Business Woman of the Year – a prestigious award which celebrates entrepreneurs and business women from a wide range of industries.

Distinguished physical chemist Professor Graham Fleming will receive a Doctor of Science degree for his extensive body of work and being a tireless ambassador for science.

He is the Vice Chancellor for Research and the Melvin Calvin Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley - one of the world’s premier universities, boasting no fewer than nine Nobel laureates amongst its current faculty.

Professor Fleming came to Bristol University to read Chemistry as an undergraduate in 1968, graduating with a BSc in 1971. His work has been described in some 450 scientific publications, making him one of the world's foremost authorities on ultrafast processes in molecules.

An honorary degree is a major accolade, awarded in recognition of outstanding achievement and distinction in a field or activity consonant with the University’s mission.

Further information

The official photographs and speeches delivered by the public orators at each ceremony are available to the media on request from the University's Press Office.
Please contact Philippa Walker for further information.
Edit this page