Students from across The Northern School of Art’s creative degree and master’s courses celebrated their achievements in a series of graduation ceremonies staged in the beautiful surroundings of St Hilda’s church on Hartlepool’s Headland.
The students were graduating from the School’s wide range of creative degree and master’s programmes on a day filled with happiness and emotion at ceremonies attended by audiences of invited guests, friends and families.
Outside the church the School’s lecturers greeted the graduates with applause and an informal guard of honour before they met up again with families and friends.
Throughout the day over 150 undergraduate and postgraduate students progressed from the School’s stage and screen and visual arts degree and master’s courses.
New graduates were honoured in acting, film for TV and theatre, costume design, model making and VFX, production design for stage and screen, digital design and advertising, graphic design, fine art, illustration, photography and textile and surface design.
Postgraduate students progressing from The Northern School of Art’s Design History and the Directing & Performing Practice MA courses also received their awards.
A keynote speech was delivered at some ceremonies by Cherie Federico who is a passionate champion of new talent and Director of the BAFTA-Qualifying Aesthetica Film Festival that sits in the national portfolio of festivals from the BFI. She is also Director of the Aesthetica Art Prize and Future Now, a symposium comprising panel talks and portfolio reviews, with sessions led by the Tate, V&A and Getty.
In his introductory speech Tim Bailey, Chair of The Northern School of Art’s governing body, said that he was “opening the ceremony with a great sense of excitement” and urged the soon to be graduates to “be brave and inquisitive.” Adding, “You are skilled, talented and hungry, we will enjoy seeing you flourish and thrive.”
Commenting on the graduation ceremonies The Northern School of Art’s Principal and Chief Executive, Martin Raby said: “On behalf of the School staff and Governors, I offer my congratulations to each graduate and wish them great success in their future endeavours.
“This is a significant occasion for us all. It is not only an important day for graduating students, but also for family members and friends who have supported them throughout their studies and, in particular, through the uncertainties that recent years have brought. The resilience you have shown since the start of your studies is commendable, and we are privileged to be celebrating with you today.”
The Northern School of Art is the only specialist art and design school in the North East and, alongside its degree-level campus in Hartlepool, has a further education site in central Middlesbrough rated Outstanding by Ofsted in 2022.