UCS: BBC broadcaster Angela Rippon receives honorary doctorate

Angela Rippon, who today received an honorary doctorate from University College Suffolk

Angela Rippon, who today received an honorary doctorate from University College Suffolk - Credit: Archant

University College Suffolk have today conferred an honorary doctorate on veteran BBC broadcaster Angela Rippon.

The doctorate was presented to Ms Rippon during a graduation ceremony for the School of Nursing and Midwifery.

The journalist and presenter of Holiday Hit-Squad and Rip-Off Britain received the honour in recognition of her work in the Patients’ Association and Alzheimer’s Society.

Ms Rippon told the audience at the ceremony that she felt “almost disbelieving gratitude” and “enormous pride” at receiving the doctorate, particularly since she never went to university.

She took the opportunity to enjoin nursing graduates to remember the importance of care and compassion, telling the EADT: “We have to produce a generation of nurses who recognise that academic qualifications are not enough.”

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She said: “You can learn how to deal with emphysema, with broken hips, with all the things that they’re going to meet medically, what you cannot teach is humanity and compassion and caring, that has to come from within, that has to come from wanting to do the job that you’re doing, from passionately wanting to be involved in the profession in which you’re involved.

“I think that there is such a spotlight on care now in care homes as well as in hospitals, that the young nurses that are leaving today are very acutely aware of the responsibility that we’re putting on their shoulders. And if they’re not they very soon will be.

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“You can’t teach it but I think the majority of young men and women who go into the nursing profession do so because they have that ability to care about people and it isn’t something you can teach but it is something that you have.

“My message to them today will be, now you know how to do your job, now show how you can do it with the compassion that you were born with, linked with the professional competence that you’ve acquired from this university. You can’t do the job without the one being laid over the other.”

Ms Rippon added that Suffolk had a “terrific record” in developing dementia friendly communities, commending the work of Willie Cruickshank as director of Norfolk & Suffolk Dementia Alliance.

“Suffolk really is providing the blueprint for how it should be done and how it can be done and how it enables people with dementia and their carers to live well with the illness.”

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