CAT Graduation 2019

CAT Graduation 2019

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On the 16th of November CAT welcomed back over forty students from our Graduate School, and their friends and families, to celebrate their graduation.

The award ceremony saw graduates pick up their awards from a range of CAT’s postgraduate programmes: MSc in Sustainability and Adaptation, MSc in Sustainability and Adaptation in the Built Environment, MSc in Sustainability and Adaptation Planning, MSc in Sustainability in Energy Provision and Demand Management, MArch in Sustainable Architecture. The ceremony also saw the first graduates from the MSc in Sustainable Food and Natural Resources course pick up their awards.


We also welcomed some of our students who studied via distance learning to CAT (some for the first time!) and it was great to hear about their experiences of studying with us and what they’ve been up to.

The importance of connection

During the ceremony graduates heard from recently appointed CAT CEO Peter Tyldesley.

“Two principles that nature teaches us are the importance of edges and of connections. CAT exists at the edges between a number of different spheres – between academia and activism and between education and lobbying – and this enables us to make the connections between people and institutions that will be vital in tackling the climate emergency and the other environmental challenges that we face.”

CAT CEO Peter Tyldesley

Through their studies at CAT our graduates have developed the skills and knowledge to bring about change, research and communicate positive solutions, and are now putting these into practice.

This year’s attendees now join over 1,800 graduates from CAT, who are all experts in their fields and are already making changes. It was great to reconnect with them and find out what they’ve been up to and to hear the positive things they had to say about their time at CAT. Sustainable Architecture graduate Freddy Thomas said the below:

“I came to CAT seeking alternatives, open to personal development and expecting to find answers. I can say at the end of my time here that I have learnt many things, and the spiritual journey I had begun has been nurtured and continues to flourish. It is clear to me now that the most important lessons I have learnt are beyond architecture, beyond the search for alternatives, they are lessons in humanity.”

Making change

Zero Carbon Britain Project Coordinator Paul Allen also gave an overview of the new Zero Carbon Britain report and talked about the urgency of tackling climate change. There are a host of social and political barriers to overcome but already many of our graduates are influencing solutions and doing inspiring work to help bring about change.

Ness Wright a graduate from our MSc Sustainability and Adaptation Planning is now facilitating workshops in Dundee exploring the future of community food growing.

Sustainable Architecture graduate Tiziana De Ronco is working on a collaborative research project, RE-FABRICATE, calling for architects and designers to craft and innovate new materials and uses from waste produce.

And Sustainable Food and Natural Resources graduates are also working on a student blog to facilitate connections between CAT students and graduates to enable them to learn and work together on positive solutions.

Academic Achievements

Graduates were also awarded further awards for highest marks overall and highest marks in the dissertation. The Liverpool John Moores courses winner for both was Ffion Thomas whose dissertation focused on the effects of bio char on plant disease and growth. She is now working towards a PhD in agro ecological approaches to managing ash dieback.

The University of East London courses winner for highest mark overall was Jennifer Mitchell who studied on our MSc in Sustainability and Adaptation. The highest mark in a UEL course dissertation was achieved by Mike Joyce whose dissertation was titled ‘Reducing the Energy Consumption of Affordable Housing in Shanghai using Unconventional, Sustainable Materials to Retrofit the Building Envelope’. Both Ffion and Mike’s dissertations will be archived at the National Library of Wales.

Graduates from our MArch in Sustainable Architecture were also awarded further prizes. The Final Design Project was awarded to Jacob Long (An Urban Hospice) and Martin Johnson (Reimagining the lost landscape the Spanish Pyrenees). The Best Technical Report which was awarded to Freddy Thomas and Tiziana Di Ronco. The Writing Prize was then awarded to Josie Turner.

The ceremony was followed by a drinks reception, buffet dinner and live band. All graduates attending were also gifted a year’s free membership to CAT which includes free entry to site and quarterly Clean Slate magazines.

Finally, big congratulations to you all and also to those that couldn’t attend the ceremony. We want to build on our informal graduate networks and develop the relations between CAT, our students and our graduates. We’d love to find out what interesting and important projects and work our graduates (from all courses and classes) are involved in, so don’t forget to keep in touch !