Bob Geldof conferred as Trinity awards 5 honorary degrees

The ceremony, which is conducted in Latin, took place at 3pm today in the exam hall and was presided over by the Chancellor of the University of Dublin, Mary Robinson.

Photo Credit – Niall Maher/Trinity News

Trinity conferred honorary degrees on five recipients at a ceremony held in the Exam Hall today, with founder of An Taisce Patricia Oliver, and musician Bob Geldof among those conferred.

The nomination process for conferring honorary degrees, states that individuals must show an “outstanding contribution to scholarship, society, culture and/or civil society”. The successful candidates are chosen by the Advisory Committee on Honorary Degrees, which is chaired by the Chancellor of the University, Mary Robinson.

Geldof, who rose to fame with the success of his punk band The Boomtown Rats, returned to Trinity after speaking at a Law Soc event last December during which he made controversial remarks about prioritising campaigns for transgender bathrooms, which were picked up by national media. Geldof is know for his contribution to charity, founding the charity supergroup Band Aid and organising the benefit concert Live Aid. He was made an Honorary Knight by Queen Elizabeth II in 1986 in recognition of his charity work. 

Oliver, who along with Geldof was awarded an LL.D. (doctorate in Law), was also awarded an honorary degree from Maynooth University last year, and has worked on Ireland’s green school’s programme.

Leading historian Professor Marianne Elliott was awarded a Doctor of Letters (Litt.D.). She has written important biographies of Wolfe Tone and Robert Emmett, and was awarded an OBE in 2000 in recognition of her work on Irish Studies at the University of Liverpool and her services to the peace process in Northern Ireland.

Professor Terence Dwyer and Professor James P Smith were conferred with doctorates in science (Sc.D.). Dywer’s research has focused on infant health; he has completed important research on the connection between the prone sleeping position and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

Smith has worked on important research on ageing, receiving awards from the National Institute of Health and currently works for the non-profit RAND corporation, which works on global policy.

Trinity’s school of Histories and Humanities held an event this morning focusing on Elliott’s research on the White City housing development in Belfast in the Long Room Hub to celebrate her award, while the School of Medicine is hosting a meeting with the Australian Ambassador on Monday to celebrate Dwyer’s honorary doctorate.