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The Voice 2022 winner Anthonia Edwards among 15 people awarded honorary degrees from Ealing’s University of West London

The University of West London (UWL) has held its graduation ceremony celebration for thousands of students at Twickenham Stadium which also saw UWL award 15 honorary degrees to people.

Among those getting an honorary degrees was singer and songwriter Anthonia Edwards, who won TV’s The Voice in 2022.

Ms Edwards, a former UWL nursing student, was honoured with a Masters in Music and has recently supported Billy Ocean on a UK tour.

Ms Edwards said: “I am proud of the person I have become over the last couple of years. Since then, I have come to realise that I am more resilient than I thought. I am not afraid to stand out and go after the things I love, like singing.  I am so grateful for this honorary degree from the University of West London.”

Other recipients of a UWL honorary degree were:

  • Audio engineer, businessperson, and member of the UWL advisory board Malcolm Toft (Doctor of Science) for his many achievements in the music industry which includes engineering tracks for David Bowie, T-Rex, The Beatles, and Paul Weller
  • Chief Executive at Black Lives in Music Charisse Beaumont (Doctor of Music) for her efforts working for equality and inclusion through research and advocacy
  • Musician, lecturer, and director of operations for Black Lives in Music, Roger Wilson, (Doctor of Music) for championing inclusivity and equality in the music business
  • Former Global Managing Partner of Allan and Overy LLP, Andrew Ballheimer (Doctor of Law)
  • UWL alumnus and computing expert, Paul Hendrick (MBA) for giving back to the university
  • CEO of Pets as Therapy Clare Davis (MBA) for the charity’s work providing therapeutic pet visits in hospitals, schools, residential homes, and prisons
  • CEO of Chiswick Park based Enjoy-Work, Matt Coulson for his work engaging local community, businesses, schools, colleges, and universities (MBA)
  • Midwifery expert Donna Ockenden (Doctor of Letters) for playing a key role in developing midwifery in the UK and abroad
  • Social worker, Amma Anane-Agyei (Doctor of Letters) for her dedication supporting Black African children and families for the past 40 years on health issues like sickle cell and Thalassemia
  • Founding CEO of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority and Vice Chair of Forbes Travel Guide Gerard ‘Jerry’ Inzerillo (Doctor of Business Administration) for championing the hospitality and tourism sector
  • Ealing resident and Chief Financial Officer at Daejan Holdings plc and Freshwater Group, James Southgate (Doctor of Business Administration) for his commitment to helping students succeed in business
  • Clinical scientist Professor Haroun Shah (Doctor of Science) for leading a newly established laboratory for Public Health England dedicated to investigating emerging pathogens
  • VFX Artist Josh Parks (honorary Doctor of Letters) for his work integrating digital assets with live-action footage in high end projects including The Martian and The Jungle Book)
  • UWL Board of Governors Chair, Jennifer Bernard (Doctor of Letters)
  • Chancellor of UWL, Laurence Geller CBE (Lifetime Achievement Award)

Commenting on the new UWL graduates from the university’s 10 schools, Professor Peter John CBE, vice-chancellor of UWL said: “Graduation is such a special moment for all our students. It is the culmination of their commitment to study, hard work and personal sacrifice over the years and it is a time to reflect on how far they have come and what they have achieved. Whatever their field of expertise, I believe that they will have had the chance to grow and develop on their educational journey here at UWL and they are now equipped with the knowledge, skills and expertise that will set them up for future career success. I am so proud of all of them and wish them good luck in everything they do in the future.”

Professor John added, “This is not just a remarkable year of achievement for our graduates and the University, too. For the first time in the history of university rankings – which spans forty years – we were given 2 University of the Year Awards. We were rated number one for student experience and number one for quality of teaching by The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023.”

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