Belfast Telegraph

Michael and Martin O'Neill, peace builders and war correspondent to get honorary degrees at Ulster University

By Jonathan Bell

The Irish international football managers, peace builders and a war correspondent are among those to receive an honorary degree from the Ulster University this summer.

Michael O'Neill and Martin O'Neill are to receive degrees for their contribution to sport for their team's heroics in last year's European Championships.

Also recognised is Father Gary Donegan, the former Holy Cross priest, for his role as a peace builder in the north Belfast and wider community.

Read more: Ardoyne priest Gary Donegan honoured with major award 

Thirteen have been nominated in all for an honorary degree as part of the university's end of year celebrations which also includes ITV journalist John Irvine.

The Belfast-born broadcaster has covered many of the world's conflicts for ITV.

Read more: ITV reporter John Irvine: I thought I was going to die as IS suicide bomber drove car straight at me

Ulster University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Paddy Nixon, said: “Each of these recipients has made an indelible mark in their field, advancing knowledge, building community, achieving excellence and above all acting as inspirational role models for us all.

“They display leadership, progressive thinking, compassion, bravery, integrity and tenacity alongside superlative skills and talent – characteristics that we aim to instil in all our students.

“One of the objectives of our new Five and Fifty strategic plan is to see Ulster University make a lasting contribution to society and to encourage diversity within our University community. These honorary degree recipients are people who are delivering on those objectives.

“As our next cohort of students prepares to graduate, I hope that they will be inspired by these people who, through the generous application of their talents, have made a positive impact on society.”

Full list of 2017 honorary degrees

Wendy Blundell,  Director UK Regions Inst. Of Civil Engineers: DSc for Outstanding leadership of and inspiration to young woman in the field of civil engineering

Fr Harry Coyle:  DLitt for  Outstanding contribution to the promotion and teaching of the Irish language

Steve Coyle, chief executive AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust: LLD for Outstanding support for economic regeneration and peacebuilding scholarship in the NW of Ireland

Thomas DiNapoli, Comptroller, New York State: LLD for Outstanding contribution to promoting US investment in the province

Fr Gary Donegan, Peace and Reconcilliation Office:  LLD for Outstanding contribution to peace building and community work in NI

Sean Doran, DoranBrowne Arts Programming & Consultancy: DFA for Outstanding contribution to the English National Opera and the international arts world

John Irvine, Journalist:  DLitt for Outstanding contribution to journalism

Daithi O'Ceallaigh: DLitt for Outstanding contribution to the Press Council of Ireland and a distinguished diplomatic career

Martin O’Neill: Republic of Ireland football manager: DSc for Outstanding contribution to Irish football and achievements at the 2016 European Championships

Michael O’Neill: Northern Ireland football manager: DSc for Outstanding contribution to Irish football and achievements at the 2016 European Championships

Sally O’Neill: LLD for Outstanding contribution as an overseas development worker

David Orr: DSc for Outstanding contribution in the field of engineering

Peter Sachs: DSc for Outstanding contribution to teaching, research and internationalisation in the area of Digital Electronics

Richard Simms, Director Pace Management: DSc for Outstanding achievement as a leading sports agent

Patrick Yu, Former chief executive NI Council for Ethnic Minorities: LLD for Outstanding contribution to the promotion of racial equality, diversity and multiculturalism

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