Usher Institute

Celebrating graduation success

Winter graduation celebrates our students' successes.

On Saturday 25 November, the Usher Institute celebrated the achievements of its talented graduates at the Deanery of Clinical Sciences and Molecular, Genetic, and Population Health Sciences graduation ceremonies.

The graduating cohort represented diverse fields within the programmes offered by the Usher Institute, including both our online and in-person Masters in Public Health, Family Medicine and Clinical Trials. Due to their early stages in the final year, there are no graduates yet for Epidemiology or Data Science in Health and Social Care; their achievements were recognised with certificates and diplomas.

Usher reception

This year’s winter graduation was particularly special as it marked the Usher Institute’s inaugural pre-graduation reception. The event offered a unique opportunity for students, along with their friends and family members, to come together and create a vibrant atmosphere of celebration. Among the attendees were many of our online students, and this reception provided them with an opportunity to connect with each other and meet face-to-face – often for the first time.

Group photo of graduates from winter graduation 2023

Awards presented

The pre-graduation reception also featured the presentation of prestigious awards.

Claire Liden was honoured with the Brotherston Award for their academic achievements.

I am sincerely grateful to accept this award, reflecting on an incredible year at The University of Edinburgh, where I've thrived with the support of my peers and the remarkable community at the Usher Institute. This past year has been one of the best of my life for many reasons, the foremost being the exceptional individuals I've encountered. The MPH administrators curated a cohort with diverse backgrounds, all sharing an incredible passion for enhancing the wellbeing of those most in need. The camaraderie and shared dedication within the MPH23 cohort has not only enriched my learning experience but has also enabled me to forge lifelong friendships. 

In delving into the principles of public health and exploring healthcare systems across different countries, I've gained profound insights that have broadened my perspective on the merits and areas for enhancement within the Canadian healthcare system. These invaluable lessons will undoubtedly shape my future as a physician, enabling me to identify opportunities for enhancing population health and disease prevention. This will empower me to extend the impact of my practice beyond the confines of direct patient care.

Claire Liden

The John Last Awards for 2023, announced in the summer, were jointly awarded to Kirsten Duggan and Abdulhamid Yaro Saidu for their excellent contribution to the public health academic community.

Starting the online MPH programme in 2020, I initially felt trepidation about returning to formal education and navigating online courses. However, the welcoming staff and engaged student community eased my concerns. Serving as a student representative allowed me to connect staff and students, and I appreciated the responsive support. Winning the John Last Award is humbling, and I'm grateful for the kind nominations. I look forward to continued involvement with Edinburgh University and the Usher Institute, fostering lasting friendships. Congratulations, Abdulhamid!

Kirsten Duggan

With immense gratitude, I accept this honour, thanking my class, supervisors and team. The Commonwealth Service Commission's Distance Learning Scholarship made my study at the University of Edinburgh possible. My MPH experience enhanced my understanding of public health principles, strengthening my ability to address challenges. The recognition of my work in Nigeria is deeply touching, motivating me to explore my ideas further. This award is a powerful encouragement for positive change, and I am committed to realising its potential.”

Abdulhamid Yaro Saidu

Graduation ceremony

The celebration continued at the McEwan Hall, where graduates donned their caps and gowns to receive their well-deserved degrees. Following the ceremony, a second reception was hosted by the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine at the Surgeon’s Quarter, providing a further opportunity for graduates and guests to celebrate.

Group photo of graduates at winter graduation 2023

The Usher Institute takes pride in the accomplishments of its graduates and looks forward to the continued success of its diverse and talented student body.

Further resources

Find out more about the John Last prize winners

Read more about Usher Institute’s teaching and learning opportunities