This year the Chancellors Medal has exceptionally been given to two members of staff. The medal is awarded annually in recognition of an individual’s outstanding contribution to the University. The medal has been awarded to Bernard Gilmartin, Professor of Optometry in LHS, and Maureen Tibby, Head of Careers, and was presented to them at Graduation last month.
Both Bernard and Maureen have made a huge impact in their respective fields at Aston. Bernard joined the University as a lecturer in 1974 and currently holds the position of Personal Chair in Optometry. He has published 120 research papers and also four book chapters, has edited two books and had over 120 Abstracts published at conferences in Europe, the Far East, USA, Australasia and Canada. Bernard also currently supervises 22 PhD students. When I asked Bernard whether he had a particular career highlight he said that it was ‘receiving the Chancellor’s Medal as it was such an unexpected surprise!’
Maureen joined Aston nearly five years ago and has guided the Careers Service through a huge period of transformation and success. The service has more than doubled in size during this period which Maureen attributes to the University’s commitment to supporting graduate employability. Maureen is also Chair of the West Midlands Regional Heads of Careers Group and contributes to and edits the UCAS publication What Do Graduates Do?
She commented; ‘The award was totally unexpected and a fantastic surprise! I am absolutely delighted to receive this honour and do so on behalf of the Careers team whose hard work and commitment to ensuring quality of careers support for all Aston students and graduates has been integral to our success.'
All members of staff are invited to nominate candidates for the award and to state reasons for their nominations. Future nominations should be made in writing to Richard Middleton, Chief Operating Officer outlining the reasons for the nomination and preferably including support for the nomination from more than one school or department (candidates should not be informed that they are being nominated).
Words by Louise Russell