University of Dundee University of Dundee
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26 May 2006

Installation of new Chancellor, The Lord Patel

Wednesday May 31st.
Academic Ceremony - Marryat Hall, 5 pm.
Photo opportunity with Lord Patel and Honorary Graduates in Twinning Room, City Chambers from 4.15 pm (before Ceremony)

Lord Patel will be installed as Chancellor of the University of Dundee at a ceremony in the Marryat Hall on Wednesday May 31st.

Lord Naren Patel, whose contribution to the field of high risk obstetrics is internationally recognised, becomes the University’s fourth Chancellor. He follows a distinguished list of previous Chancellors: HM The Queen Mother (1967-77), Lord Dalhousie (1977-92), and Sir James Black OM who retired earlier this year at the age of 82 after 14 years in the post.

"Looking at the stature of the people who have held this distingushed post previously, I am humbled to think I can carry out this role of Chancellor with as much ability as they did," said Lord Patel.

"What I can say is that I will do everything I can as Chancellor to help the University."

Lord Patel’s first official function as Chancellor will be to confer honorary degrees of Doctor of Laws on politician, academic and leading humanitarian campaigner Baroness Cox of Queensbury, and Professor Anna Glasier, family planning specialist and one of Scotland’s leading "well woman gurus".

As Chancellor, one of Lord Patel’s new duties will be to preside over the University’s 2006 graduation ceremonies in June and July.

Notes for editors

1. Biographical note on Lord Patel Kt, F Med Sci, FRSE

Lord Patel’s key contribution is in the field of medicine where his obstetrics work is of international standing. He is currently retired and sits in the House of Lords having received a knighthood in 1997 and elevation to the Peerage in 1999. There he has been a member of the Science and Technology Committee for seven years. He is currently Chairman of the UK Stem Cell Oversight Committee and Chairman of the National Patient Safety Agency of England and Wales. He is also a member of the Board of the Armed Forces Pay Review.

Previously he has held the positions of Chairman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges of Scotland and the United Kingdom; Chairman of the National Health Quality Improvement Scotland, member of the Council of the General Medical Council and Academy of Medical Sciences and Chairman of the Genetic Advisory Committee of the Medical Research Council of the United Kingdom. He is a past president of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. He is patron of a number of charities, board member of several others, and is closely involved in developing centres for training and treatment in Africa.

His academic and clinical interests are in the field of high risk obstetrics. He has published widely on preterm labour, foetal growth retardation and obstetric epidemiology.

Born in Tanzania, he was educated in India, Tanzania and London. He graduated from the University of St Andrews in 1964 and since qualifying has continued to work in Scotland, including more than 30 years at Ninewells Hospital and Medical School. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and an honorary Fellow of several UK, Irish and overseas Colleges. He is past Chairman of the Clinical Standards Board for Scotland, and of Quality Improvement Scotland and was vice president of FIGO, the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics which works to raise the standard of practice.

A graduate of Queen’s College, St Andrews University, Lord Patel has worked for almost all of his professional life at Dundee Royal Infirmary and Ninewells Hospital and Medical School. He was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Dundee in 2004 and holds similar awards from a number of other universities as well as honorary fellowships of universities and national organisations worldwide.

2. The Baroness Cox of Queensbury has made an extraordinarily courageous contribution to international humanitarian work in some of the world’s most dangerous and difficult places over a period of many years. A committed Christian, she began her career as a nurse and has put her own life at risk many times in campaigning on behalf of the poor and marginalised in communist Poland and Moscow, Burma, North East Africa, Armenia and other trouble spots. Baroness Caroline Cox was created a Life Peer in 1982 and has been Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords since 1985. She has been co-director Education Research Trust since 1980 and chief executive of the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust UK since 2004. She was Founder Chancellor of Bournemouth University from 1991-2001 and is Vice President of the Royal College of Nursing. Baroness Cox has been honored with the Commander Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland and the Wilberforce Award for her humanitarian work; an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and Honorary Doctorates by universities in the UK, the US, the Russian Federation and Armenia. She is a non-executive director of the Andrei Sakharov Foundation; a Trustee of MERLIN (Medical Emergency Relief International) and the Siberian Medical University; and is President of Christian Solidarity-UK Trustees. She is a trustee of the Metta Trust for Children’s Education.

3. Professor Anna Glasier is a family planning specialist, one of Scotland’s leading "well woman gurus" and a Director and Consultant for the Family Planning and Well Woman Services for Edinburgh and Lothian.

She is Director of Sexual and Reproductive Health at The University of Edinburgh and lead clinician for Lothian Primary Care NHS Trust.

Professor Glasier has been a key supporter of Sexpression--a national network of sex education initiatives started in 1998 and led by students in the community. There is now a national network of sex education initiatives based in the community led by students who work with local organisations to teach effective interactive sex and relationships education to young people, after extensive training from experts in all fields relating to sexual health. Each group runs itself and has its own name; Sexpression--the committee that represents them--has always avoided forcing individual groups into a national mould. Another significant and successful initiative in which Anna Glasier has played a key role, tackles the problem of teenage pregnancy, as she played a leading role in a feasibility study on adolescent sex education using medical students as peer educators in Edinburgh Schools.

She is Honorary Professor in the School of Clinical Sciences and Community Health at the University of Edinburgh and in the Department of Public Health Policy at the University of London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

4. The University of Dundee Charter 1967 defines the role of Chancellor:

"There shall be a Chancellor of the University who shall be the head of the University, shall preside over all Academic Ceremonies of the University at which he is present and shall be President of the Graduates’ Council of the University."

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