Graduates go top of the class

Joseph Bulmer

Barnstaple pays tribute to Petroc’s academic success stories

PETROC students celebrated their graduation at a special town centre ceremony in Barnstaple on Saturday morning.

In a spectacle fitting of Cambridge or Oxford, more than 100 students turned out in traditional gowns and mortarboards to rub shoulders with shoppers as they took part in the annual procession along the High Street.

Their achievements were recognised at the sixth annual Petroc Higher Education Ceremony at St Peter’s Church.

Speaking at the ceremony, Petroc principal, David Dodd, said: “The graduands we celebrate today are among the best students at one of the best universities in the world.

“These students are among the most intelligent, capable and driven people to be found; not only in North Devon, not only in England, but in the world.”

Many of the foundation degree students will progress to a further year of study in Plymouth.

Mr Dodd praised the students and the contributions the college’s lecturing and support staff make to their success.

And he said that Petroc’s higher education programmes provided a high quality option, rather than just a cheaper alternative to going away to university.

“Sometimes we think we have to travel further or spend more to get world class quality,” he added.

“We don’t. The people and resources are here on our doorstep.”

The college has just published its new Guide to Higher Education Courses 2012/13, featuring 25 courses which can all be studied on a full or part time basis.

For information on studying a foundation degree at Petroc, telephone (01271) 852365 or visit