04 July 2024

Abertay University announces Honorary Graduates for 2024 Summer Graduation

David Dorward MBE and Marie-Claire Isaaman to receive honorary degrees at July 12 ceremony

A Scottish local government and charity leader and a renowned diversity champion in the gaming industry will be awarded Honorary Degrees at Abertay University's summer graduation ceremony next week. 

David Dorward MBE, the former chief executive of Dundee City Council and founder of Dundee Bairns, a charity dedicated to supporting disadvantaged children in the city, will be recognised for his dedication to the community. Additionally, Marie-Claire Isaaman, CEO of Women in Games, an organisation committed to creating a gender-equal games industry, culture, and community, will also be awarded an honorary degree. 

The ceremony will take place on Friday 12 July, at Caird Hall in Dundee, where over 700 graduates from all four of Abertay's academic schools – the School of Design and Informatics, the School of Applied Sciences, the School of Business, Law and Social Sciences, and the Graduate School – will receive their degrees. 

Members of the University's leadership team, including Chancellor Professor Alice Brown and Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Liz Bacon, will address both morning and afternoon ceremonies. 

Professor Liz Bacon said:  

Graduation is a time of great joy and celebration at Abertay as we come together to recognise the remarkable accomplishments of our students. We are delighted to welcome David Dorward and Marie Claire Isaaman as honorary graduates, whose stories of commitment to philanthropy and promoting diversity are a shining example for our students. We're honoured to have them join the Abertay family and celebrate their achievements alongside those of our talented students.

David Dorward MBE has spent over four decades working in local government, including serving as Chief Executive of Dundee City Council from 2009 to 2014. In 2015, he founded Dundee Bairns, a charity that aims to support local children and families by providing access to basic necessities like food, clothing, and activities. Throughout his career, Dorward has also held various leadership roles, including directorship positions at Dundee United Football Club and the Rank Foundation.  

Marie-Claire Isaaman is an award-winning entrepreneur, executive consultant, and thought leader in the gaming, tech, and education sectors. As Co-Director and CEO of Women in Games (WIG), she has transformed the organisation from a small UK-based group to a global leader in promoting gender equality and diversity in the gaming industry. Under Marie-Claire's leadership, WIG has won several prestigious awards, including the MCV DEVLOP Women in Games Outstanding Achievement Award, the Diversity Category at the Gamesindustry.biz Best Places to Work Awards, and the TIGA Game Industry Awards.  

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