Holyrood’s praise as uni celebrates
MSPs’tribute as institution marks 50th anniversary
Stirling University has this week been honoured in the Scottish Parliament as part of its 50th anniversary celebrations.
MSPs congratulated the university on its landmark birthday during a special debate.
Stirling MSP Bruce Crawford led a 40-minute discussion on the institutions’s history and success at Holyrood on Wednesday.
Members from across the political spectrum joined Mr Crawford in the debate as principal, Professor Gerry McCormac watched on from the public gallery.
Mr Crawford told Parliament : “On September 18 1967, the doors to the University of Stirling opened for the very first time, admitting 195 students, 164 graduates and 31 postgraduates. It was the first genuinely new university in Scotland for 400 years.
“The royal charter was signed in November 1967 and the great seal of Scotland was applied the following month.
“Stirling’s university has grown to become a global player in educational excellence, and I am delighted to lead this debate to highlight the significant history and achievements of this wonderful institution.
“The debate also gives us the opportunity to consider the massive contribution that the university makes to education, culture and research.”
Mr Crawford praised the work of the University’s co-founder and first principal, Tom Cottrell, for building a “thriving institution that continues to inspire to this day”.
Politicians also paid tribute to the university’s “unrivalled” contribution to sport, its state-ofthe-art library and “remarkable track record” for welcoming international students during the debate, which was broadcast live on the Scottish Parliament website.
Mid Scotland and Fife MSP Alexander Stewart said the university had made a “huge contribution” to the economy of Stirling, citing its 14,000 students and 1,500 staff.
Green MSP Mark Ruskell, one of the university’s 82,000 alumni, spoke fondly of his time at Stirling and recalled a political “poster war” between him and another former student, the SNP’s Richard Lochhead.
Mr Ruskell added: “Indeed, he might not know that it was me who used to rip down his posters.”
Mid Scotland and Fife MSP Dean Lockhart also contributed to the debate before Shirley-Anne Somerville, Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, brought proceedings to a close.
Ms Somerville, also a former Stirling student, added: “As someone who studied at the University of Stirling for two years as a postgraduate and had a very happy time there, I along with colleagues who studied or worked there, am confident that the institution will build on the history that we are celebrating today.
“I am sure that we will be back in the chamber in years to come to celebrate the further success of the university.”
He might not know that it was me who used to rip down his posters
Birthday greeting MSPs praise contribution made by Stirling University and its students
Ripping time Mark Ruskell MSP