St Andrews in the News

June 2018

Welcome to the June edition of St Andrews in the News – the monthly e-newsletter that keeps all our alumni, parents, donors and friends in the loop about current news, information and events.

University news
View a full list of news from around the University.
Dr Wu and Principal

£1 million donation to postgraduate scholarships

The University was delighted to receive a £1 million donation towards postgraduate scholarships this month from Dr Wu Xianhong of the Wu Xianhong Foundation. Read more.

students sitting at computer

The General Data Protection Regulation – “the GDPR”

In May 2018 European and UK data protection legislation changed, when the GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018 came into force. In many instances, the data protection legislation strengthens the privacy rights of individuals, notably where consent is required of people to make use of their personal data. Read more and read the University’s privacy notice.

sabbs jumping for joy

Top in Scotland and third in the UK

The University of St Andrews has been ranked the best university in Scotland and third in the UK once again this year by the Guardian University Guide 2019. Read more. It is also one of the world’s top 100 universities according to the QS World Rankings.


New research solves seabird mystery

Ecologists at the universities of St Andrews and Leeds have discovered that long-lived seabird species take several years to learn where the best feeding grounds are, and how to recognise them. Read more.

saintsfunder logo


We are delighted to report that we recently raised £7,000 towards Wardlaw Scholarships through SaintsFunder – our crowdfunding platform. Our thanks to the Saints Sport team who completed the inaugural project: the 3 Peaks Challenge! You, too, can make a difference to a student’s life by supporting Wardlaw Scholarships and giving online.

Check out the SaintsFunder platform for the next project: Byre Opera’s production of Handel’s Xerxes.

We would be delighted to talk to alumni, students and staff alike about fundraising initiatives that could benefit the University community, so contact us with your ideas.

group image of John Stuart Mill competition

Matching wits – ethically

The John Stuart Mill Cup - a pioneering tournament to encourage high school students to match wits on a variety of ethical topics - was recently hosted by the University’s Centre for Ethics, Philosophy and Public Affairs. Read more.

school of chemistry

Chemistry professor awarded Prix Henri Moissan

Professor David O’Hagan of the School of Chemistry has been awarded the 2018 Prix Henri Moissan for his work in fluorine chemistry. Read more.


Byre Opera performs Xerxes

Byre Opera is performing Handel’s Xerxes in St Andrews, Berwick-upon-Tweed and, for the first time, in London. The Music Centre is currently crowdfunding through SaintsFunder to support the London performances at the Priory Church of the Order of St John in Clerkenwell. Read more and book tickets.


Saltire Society announces first woman president

Professor Sally Mapstone, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University, is succeeding Magnus Linklater as President of the Saltire Society. Read more.

reconstruction of Cathedral

700th anniversary: consecration of St Andrews cathedral

Celebrations are taking place this summer to commemorate this significant anniversary. Read more.

participants in boat / pipers

Launch of 2018 Patrons’ Programme

We are delighted to announce that tickets have just been launched for the fourth year of our Patrons’ Programme.

We would be delighted to welcome you to our beautiful town on Thursday 13 and Friday 14 September 2018 to soak up the full St Andrews experience: meet some of our leading academics and listen to their cutting-edge research at bespoke events; receive up-to-the-minute news about our many ongoing projects; and gain exclusive access to local historic sites and residences.

For the full programme of available events and to purchase your tickets, please visit our website. If you have any questions, please contact the Events team at, or on +44 (0)1334 461901.

book cover

Wild Wanderings: A life Amongst Mountains

Phil Gribbon – former Physics Professor at the University and a key figure in Arctic mountaineering and exploration in the 1960s and 1970s – has published a book about his mountaineering experiences. In Wild Wanderings: A life Amongst Mountains, Phil explores his many Arctic alpine first ascents and expeditions in Greenland, United States and Canada. Phil was awarded the Polar Medal by HM Queen Elizabeth in 2014.

golfing honorary grads

Peter Thomson: legend of the game

The University was saddened to learn the news of the passing of golfing legend and honorary graduate Peter Thomson. Peter is widely regarded as one of Australia’s greatest golfers and is a five-time winner of The Open Championship. He was awarded an honorary degree by the University during The Open in St Andrews in 2005 alongside Nick Faldo and Peter Alliss and was a very special guest at the University’s 600th Anniversary golf tournament in 2013. The University sends its condolences to Peter’s family and friends. Read more.
Alumni news

General Council News

Summer meeting of the General Council of the University of St Andrews
The summer meeting of the General Council will take place on Saturday 30 June at 10.30am in Parliament Hall, South Street, St Andrews. Tea and coffee will be available from 10.00am. The Chancellor, Lord Campbell of Pittenweem, will preside. The Principal, Professor Sally Mapstone, will deliver the University Address, and there will be a presentation by Professor Brad MacKay, Vice- Principal (International Strategy and External Relations) entitled “Positioning St Andrews in a time of national and international change – development of the University’s strategy”. General Council members will be sent a link to the billet (meeting paper) in advance of the meeting and printed copies will be available at the meeting.

General Council Assessor to the University Court Election

Many thanks to all those who participated in the General Council Assessor election, the results of which will be formally notified at the above meeting and published on the election page of the website thereafter. We would be grateful for any feedback on the voting process. Email:


New on the blog this month:
Our intern Francis Newman interviews two current students and a recent graduate for our blog this month. The students have founded their own unique company selling custom-made St Andrews-themed blankets while Lindsey Karmen (BSc 2017, Principal’s Medal winner) has won the award for Best Undergraduate in Scotland at the British Education Awards. Also, Alumni Relations Officer, Phil Pass (MA 2009), reviews this year’s Alumni Festival Weekend.
Alumni clubs
View a full list of alumni club activities.


The University of St Andrews Alumni Club, Chicago, is holding a summer meetup and pub night on Tuesday 26 June from 6pm to 8pm at the Duke of Perth, 2913 North Clark Street, Chicago. Please RSVP.

North West of England

The University of St Andrews Alumni Club, North West of England and North West Hospitals have united to bring you the first ever joint Mess Summer Ball on Saturday 14 July from 6pm to 1am at the Imperial War Museum North, Manchester! Join us for great food, fantastic entertainment and wine-infused merriment! Tickets £35 mess members; £55 non-members . Contact details.


The University of St Andrews Alumni Club, Vienna is hosting a ‘Kabinenparty’ on Friday 13 July from 5pm to 9pm at Badeschiff Wien, Donaukanal, 1010 Vienna. Contact details.


The University of St Andrews Alumni Club, Zurich is holding summer reunion drinks on Thursday 12 July from 7.30pm to 11pm at “Quai 61” bar, 61 Mythenquai, 8002 Zurich. More information on Facebook or email.
What's on
View a full list of University events in St Andrews and further afield.

Launch of St Andrews Voices Festival 2018

This year’s programme has just been launched, with tickets on sale from 2 July. Get a sneak preview at the programme now!
xerxes poster

Byre Opera: Xerxes

The Byre Theatre, Friday 22 to Sunday 24 June, 7.30pm
(2.30pm relaxed performance on Sunday)

Byre Opera’s production offers a contemporary take on Handel’s classic tragicomedy. It is sung in Nicholas Hytner’s English translation and reunites the director-and-designer team of Tania Holland Williams and Gregor Donnelly who collaborated so successfully on The Turn of the Screw for Byre Opera two years ago. See SaintsFunder to support the opera students.

See the Byre’s full programme
See the Music Centre’s full programme


The Home Front: The United Kingdom 1914-1918

Various locations
This public programme accompanies the conference hosted by Sir Hew Strachan, Professor of International Relations at the University of St Andrews, to mark the centenary of the First World War.
Alumni Authors
book cover

In the Blink of an Eye


Ali Bacon, MA 1974

Price – paperback £9.99
Available from: Amazon

book cover

Dazzle - Disguise and Disruption in War and Art


James Taylor, MA 1985

Price - hardback £15.66
Available from: Amazon


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Development Office

Crawford Building, 91 North Street
St Andrews, KY16 9AJ

Alumni Relations

T: +44 (0)1334 467194


T: +44 (0)1334 462154

General Enquiries

T: +44 (0)1334 462113
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