Published on 13 July 2017
Turning 21 is one of life’s great milestones – as is graduating from university – but for Keira Scott both milestones came on the same day.
Keira, from Sunderland, graduated at the Stadium of Light this Wednesday (12 July) alongside over 2,500 fellow University of Sunderland students – but uniquely, Keira celebrated her 21 birthday on her graduation day.
“It’s a big celebration for the family,” says Keira. “It’s my 21st birthday and I’m graduating - they’re all really proud of me.”
Keira graduated with a First class degree in Sociology, and one particularly proud member of her family is Keira’s mother Gillian – who graduated from the University of Sunderland herself in June 2000, when Keira was just about to turn four years old – and as Keira prepares to leave, Gillian is just about to return to her old university.
“My Mum studied Biological Sciences at the Sunderland, and she’s coming back to do postgraduate study in September,” says Keira. “Mum coming here was a definite influence on me.”
In fact this isn’t the first time Keira has ‘graduated’ from the University of Sunderland – she first graduated in 2000, aged 4, from the university’s award-winning St Mary’s Nursery.
“My Mum was pregnant with me in her first year, so had to go part-time, graduating in 2000 – and 17 years later I’m back!”
Now Keira is planning to follow in her mother’s footsteps again – but a bit further afield this time round.
“I’m going to Queen’s University Belfast to study Social Science research - then who knows what, one step at a time.”
The University of Sunderland’s Graduation Ceremonies are estimated to bring £1 million annually to the region and are attended by over 11,000 students, family, friends and supporters.