Royal Roads University honours Arctic advocate, business leader and local hero
If any of more than 850 students graduating this fall from Royal Roads University were looking for role models, they needed to look no further than Arctic advocate Sheila Watt-Cloutier, distinguished business leader Bob Skene and local hero Bob Beckett. Inspirational, visionary and hard-working are adjectives that aptly apply to all three of these notable individuals; each honoured under the signature white marquis at convocation on Friday, Nov. 7.
Watt-Cloutier of Iqaluit received an honorary degree for a number of astonishing accomplishments, most notably helping launch the world’s first international legal action on climate change.
Skene, who has had an exceptional three-decade-long financial management career in Victoria, was presented with an honorary degree for his role as a tireless and giving business and community leader.
Bob Becket, Langford fire chief and emergency program co-ordinator, accepted a Chancellor’s Community Recognition Award at convocation, honouring not only his community work locally but extraordinary humanitarian efforts that have taken him outside of the country and into the world’s danger zones.
Of the 886 students graduating, 574 received degrees or certificates from graduate level programs and 312 from under-graduate level programs. Just over half were women; 11 were from First Nations communities; and 243 were from countries other than Canada including Argentina, Bangladesh, China, Israel, Mozambique, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and South Africa. Fall 2008 convocation also marked the first time graduate certificates were awarded to students in two inaugural programs: Destination Development from the Faculty of Tourism and Hotel Management; and Environmental Practice from the Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences.