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Hospice hosts graduation ceremony for terminally ill student

Staff praise 'amazing' University of Northampton health studies and social care student Dennis Newlove at his own private graduation ceremony.
Dennis Newlove

A hospice matron caring for a terminally ill student from the University of Northampton has praised his 'incredible strength and determination' at a private graduation ceremony held on site.

Health studies and social care student Dennis Newlove has had throat cancer throughout his three-year degree, but was only admitted to Northampton's Cynthia Spencer Hospice last week.

Hospice matron Gail Oliver said: 'We’ve had weddings, birthday parties and early Christmas celebrations for our patients, but this is the first graduation at the hospice. We had a couple of days' notice it was happening and everyone pulled out all the stops to organise the ceremony.

'Amazing achievement'

'It’s been a very special day, and we all feel

A hospice matron caring for a terminally ill student from the University of Northampton has praised his 'incredible strength and determination' at a private graduation ceremony held on site.


Dennis Newlove was surrounded by friends, family, and hospice and university staff at the private ceremony.

Health studies and social care student Dennis Newlove has had throat cancer throughout his three-year degree, but was only admitted to Northampton's Cynthia Spencer Hospice last week.

Hospice matron Gail Oliver said: 'We’ve had weddings, birthday parties and early Christmas celebrations for our patients, but this is the first graduation at the hospice. We had a couple of days' notice it was happening and everyone pulled out all the stops to organise the ceremony.

'Amazing achievement'

'It’s been a very special day, and we all feel privileged to have been a part of it. For Dennis to have achieved his degree is amazing, and is testament to his incredible strength and determination.'

Ward sister Lorna Mair said the ceremony was 'such a happy occasion'. She added: 'Dennis has worked so hard for this, he’s been so strong, he’s simply an amazing man.'

Mr Newlove, who graduated with a 2:1, was surrounded by friends, family and nursing staff as he was presented with his award. 

'There cannot be an exact expression to describe how I feel today,' he said. 'Today is the best, and the beginning of the best to come. Studying for this degree has been challenging, considering my health, but the university has proved to me that any challenge can be beaten.'

Dissertation

During the ceremony, Mr Newlove was presented with a leather-bound copy of his dissertation, which was about his condition.

University academics from the faculty of health and society were present to oversee the official graduation proceedings. Senior lecturer Sindy Banga said Mr Newlove had shown 'unwavering perseverance' in completing his coursework, adding: 'We are all proud of you, beyond words. Very well done.'

Mr Newlove paid tribute to staff at the hospice, who he said showed 'competence and passion in everything they do'.

 
 

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