‘Chancellor, I Now Ask The Public Orator’: The Honorary Graduand’s Citation

Honorary Grads have been part of University of the West Indies (UWI) graduations since 1965 when the Queen Mother was honoured as Chancellor of the University of London to which UWI had previously been connected. Our UWI Archives colleagues have focused on Honorary Graduands during October, when graduations ceremonies are taking place at UWI Campuses across the Caribbean. We’re happy to share this post:

Roots of the West Indian Pelican

In 13 ceremonies around the Caribbean, The University of the West Indies will celebrate the achievements of Graduates of the University, with the Chancellor conferring various degrees from Associates to Doctorates to students from around the region and the world.

Dr (later Professor) Mark McWatt, Public Orator-Cave Hill, presents Sir Fred Phillips, in 1989. (Image credit: Dr (later Professor) Mark McWatt, Public Orator-Cave Hill, presents Sir Fred Phillips, in 1989. (Image credit: “UWI Cave Hill 40 Years: A celebration” 2003)

One of the highlights of the ceremony is the conferment of Honorary Degrees by the UWI Chancellor. At that point in the ceremony, the University Registrar, caps the Chancellor, and calls upon the Public Orator, saying:

Sir, I now ask the Public Orator, to read the Citation for the (Honorary Graduand) whom the Senate and the Council of the University have been pleased to recommend for the award of the degree of Doctor of Laws/Letters/Science, Honoris Causa.

Then stepping forward to the podium the Public Orator caps the…

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