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Kirby family celebrate a doctorate and degree double

18 November 2011 @TeesUniNews


Retired nurses David and Jean Kirby, both 77, saw their son Steve receive his Doctorate and Steve’s daughter Charlotte awarded a BSc (Hons) Midwifery at Middlesbrough Town Hall.

Steve, 53, from Great Ayton, works at the University as a senior lecturer in mental health nursing and as a programme leader. His parents were both registered mental nurses at St. Luke’s Hospital in Middlesbrough from the 1950s until retirement, and six other family members and friends also worked there.

Steve followed his parents by qualifying as a registered mental nurse in 1981, moving into lecturing 20 years later.

He said: 'It meant so much to my parents to see their son and grand daughter both graduate. Charlotte is the first in the family to go to University at what I’d call the 'proper age.' I didn’t study for my master’s degree until I was in my 40s.

'Charlotte was in the audience as a guest to see me get my doctorate and I’ll be on stage as part of the School of Health & Social Care’s staff. I'll be able to see her close up crossing the stage to receive her degree and be as proud as punch.'

Charlotte, 25, from Marton, Middlesbrough, is applying for her first midwifery post. She said: 'I’ve wanted to be a midwife for as long as I can remember. The degree was really good, every day you learned something completely new which changed everything about you.

'You come out of this degree a completely different person. There was phenomenal support from peers as I have now made friends for life. I’m proud to see dad receive his doctorate; it was seven years of hard work and we felt involved throughout.'

Steve’s doctorate explored the lives of nine segregated prisoners through interviews, examining their coping mechanisms to survive this experience.

More about graduation 2011

In the News

Make ours a double
Evening Gazette, 24/11/2011, p.37
Two married retired nurses, David and Jean Kirby, have enjoyed the honour of seeing both their son Steve and granddaughter Charlotte graduate from Teesside University in the same week