Political and social mobility activist, the RT Hon Justine Greening, has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Cardiff Metropolitan University.
Following her Parliamentary career, Justine has campaigned for social mobility and equal opportunities, establishing the Social Mobility Pledge in 2018. The scheme is aimed at broadening social mobility and opportunity in Britain, which brings businesses and universities together to improve social mobility.
The former Secretary of State for Education and MP for Putney, Justine is the Chair of the Purpose Coalition, a cross-party initiative which brings together the UK’s most innovative leaders, Parliamentarians, over 700 businesses and 50 universities – including Cardiff Met – to share best practice and develop solutions for improving opportunity and social mobility for their communities.
Speaking about the accolade, awarded at Cardiff Met’s November Graduation Ceremonies 2023 at the Wales Millennium Centre, Justine said: “I am so honoured to receive an Honorary Doctorate. Like many students receiving their degrees here today, I was the first person in my family to go to university – it’s an experience that changed my life. That’s why the work Cardiff Met does is so important, making sure that everyone has that same chance to make something of their lives. Plus, in doing all of that, Cardiff Met is developing the talent that is crucial for the wider regional and national economy to grow. It’s an engine of social mobility not just for its students but for the wider country.”
As well as Secretary of State for Education, Justine also served as the Minister for Women and Equalities.
Sharing advice to Cardiff Met graduates, Justine added: “There’ll be lots of opportunities ahead of you in life with a fantastic degree from a fantastic university. But whatever route you choose, I hope it builds in the ambition that Cardiff Met shows for making a positive broader social impact. Everyone can make a positive difference and it underpins everything Cardiff Met stands for – now you have the chance to take that powerful ethos into your future lives – good luck.”
Professor Cara Aitchison, Cardiff Met’s President and Vice Chancellor, said: “Justine is a very worthy recipient of our Honorary Doctorate for her tireless campaigning for social mobility across the UK. She shares Cardiff Met’s belief in the importance of education in creating a more prosperous and fairer society by widening participation in education and supporting those without the privilege of family connections and finances to succeed in graduate professions. Justine’s own story and her determination to improve social mobility for all will, I’m sure, act as a source of inspiration for our graduates in following causes they truly believe in throughout their careers.”