UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


UCL PALS Virtual Graduation Ceremony 2021

29 October 2021

Congratulations to everyone that took part in the UCL PALS Virtual Graduation Ceremony this week!

UCL PALS Graduation 2021

The UCL PALS Graduation Ceremony took place this week online, which celebrated the hard work and achievements of undergraduates from the UCL Division of Psychology and Language Sciences (UCL PALS). Academic and professional services staff participated and offered our graduates their well wishes.

UCL President and Provost Dr Michael Spence offered “wholehearted congratulations” in his speech and acknowledged that the situation hasn’t been ideal and he would have preferred to celebrate in person. Nevertheless, he emphasised this “doesn’t diminish the achievements of UCL PALS graduates”, rather he is “in awe of the achievements”. Dr Spence went on to note that this year marks the 195th anniversary of UCL, and Jeremy Bentham's commitment to social justice and changing the world for the better will be carried forward by graduates. “You are part of UCL’s history but also its future”, he said.

Professor Peter Fonagy OBE, Head of UCL PALS, also delivered a message to attendees saying that: "PALS is in many ways quite a special place to study. Not just because of its outstanding subject matter expertise, but because of its openness to intellectual challenge, to a range of views and to celebrating the quality of students' arguments. We hope that when you come to educate others, you will have the same generosity of spirit which PALS aims to foster. A spirit of kindness, of an intellectual sort. I hope that in your different journeys, intellectual openness will always trump dogmatism, in the way that I very much hope that we at least sometimes succeeded in achieving."

Professor David Shanks, Deputy to the Dean and former Head of UCL PALS, also congratulated the group and commented that he was "particularly struck in these challenging times by the commitment that you have shown, not only in your studies but also in the many ways you have kept our vibrant community alive. As we have all had to adapt to challenging circumstances, your support and the resilience you have shown in the face of many unforeseen challenges have been vital. Congratulations to you all and I hope you are immensely proud of what you have achieved."

All of the UCL PALS graduates are joining an extensive global community of over 200,000 UCL alumni, and as alumni of UCL PALS, are in a particularly fortunate position coming from such an exciting, dynamic and productive institution that is a world leader in the fields of mind, behaviour and language. 

On behalf of all of the UCL PALS community, congratulations to everyone that graduated this week - what a truly amazing achievement.