Goodbye John from Vakalo
Vakalo Art and Design College Award Ceremony
Vakalo Art and Design College held their award ceremony on Sunday 15th February at the Conference Hall of the National Physics Research Centre “Democritus” in Athens, Greece. Vakalo is Derby’s the longest standing international partner having worked with the University since 1996 and this ceremony was the last one for Professor John Coyne, Vice Chancellor to attend prior to his retirement from the University in July 2015.
In John’s address to the students, he paid tribute to their achievements, emphasized the importance of creativity, aiming high and how art can touch a nation by giving the example of one of Derby graduates, Paul Cummins installation of poppies at the Tower of London.
Some 80 students graduated from University of Derby programmes including BA in Design both in Graphic Design and Interior Design pathways, MA in Visual Communications with Graphic Design, Web Design and Illustration and Book Design pathway and MA in Architectural Design (Landscape Design).
Dr.Daniel Gounaridis, Director of Studies, quoted the Vice-Chancellor in his address, before gifting Professor John Coyne with a token of his esteem, a gift designed by Jeannine Bayatt, a sculptor and long-standing colleague of the Vakalo.
‘Our common progress with the University of Derby has been marked on both sides by the spirit and ideas of people involved. Among them, a most important presence is that of the Vice-Chancellor Professor John Coyne, who has had the overall responsibility to steer this collaboration for the last ten years. The recent announcement of his retirement saddened us indeed as we see him not only a most important colleague but also a close friend of the Vakalo. We wish him all the best in his future plans and we assure him that at the Vakalo we will always feel him as one of our own’.