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Director of GCHQ receives Honorary Doctorate of Science

University of Gloucestershire’s relationship with GCHQ in the area of cyber security was celebrated as Sir Jeremy Fleming, Director of GCHQ, was conferred with an Honorary Doctorate of Science.

Sir Jeremy received the award during the University’s week-long series of Graduation Ceremonies in recognition of his distinguished career and the important social and economic contribution that GCHQ makes to Gloucestershire.

The award also acknowledges the support provided by Sir Jeremy and his colleagues in linking the University up with industry partners to help develop the C11 Cyber Security and Digital Innovation Centre at Berkeley and in establishing cyber as an academic community at the University.

Professor Kamal Bechkoum, Head of School of Computing and Engineering, said: “We value our relationship with GCHQ extremely highly and we’re honoured that Sir Jeremy attended our Graduation Ceremonies to accept his award.

“GCHQ has provided support in helping the Head of School of Computing and Engineering to develop links with a number of external partners across a range of areas, including defining the specifications for C11 as well as the learning environment at the Park Campus.

“We welcome GCHQ’s help in providing feedback on our cyber and computing curriculum, while guest lecturers provided by GCHQ have proved extremely valuable to our students.”

During his tenure so far, Sir Jeremy, who was appointed in 2017, has overseen the creation of the National Cyber Security Centre with a mission to make the UK the safest place to live and do business online.

It has become a world leader in bringing together Government, industry and international partners to address cyber threats and inform the public.

Sir Jeremy has led a significant period of growth in the Agency, with the development of a strategic base in Manchester and a focus on diversity and inclusion.

In 2019 he led GCHQ’s centenary celebrations with the publication of a landmark official history, and in 2020 a new partnership with the MoD was announced to create a National Cyber Force charged with delivering cyber operations.

Sir Jeremy said: “I am delighted to have been conferred with an Honorary Doctorate of Science by the University of Gloucestershire.

With technology playing such a key role in all of our lives, it is clear that skills in science are key to the future prosperity and security of the country.

So I look forward to our continued work with academic institutions, like the University of Gloucestershire, to help grow the next generation of talent the UK needs.”

The University’s cyber programmes are developed in partnership with industry leaders, helping to ensure that 100 per cent of cyber and computing students secure graduate employment or further study as they are equipped with the skills that businesses need. Many of them stay in the county, boosting Gloucestershire’s cyber credentials.

Establishing one of the first post-Brexit university partnerships in Europe, the University has partnered with a German institution to set up a £4 million Cyber and Digital Innovation Centre in Duren.

Closer to home, the University’s £3.6 million C11 Cyber and Digital Innovation Centre offers a specialist secure environment for businesses and sector-leading testing and research.

The University is a key partner in the Golden Valley Development – home to Cyber Central UK – chairing the research and innovation stakeholders group and sharing its expertise in a range of cyber-tech areas related to skills and education, as well as research and knowledge exchange in topics from Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain Security to randomness and the interface between cyber security and human behaviour and ethics.

Picture: Prof Kamal Bechkoum (left) and Sir Jeremy Fleming