Vice Chancellor Julie Mennell and Archbishop in academic caps and gowns at University of Cumbria graduations
"May we journey through life as people who are always keen to learn, are concerned for those around us and are being the change that we want to see." Archbishop of York

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu was installed as first Chancellor of York St John University at York Minster on 7th March 2007.  He is also the first Chancellor of the University of Cumbria which was formed in 2007 by the merger of St Martin’s College, Cumbria Institute of the Arts and University of Central Lancashire’s Cumbria.

He attends the graduation ceremonies of both universities and enjoys awarding degrees to the graduands.

Graduation ceremonies are always joyous occasions - a celebration of each person’s hard work and achievement in their chosen field.

Archbishop Sentamu
Opening of the Sentamu Building at the University of Cumbria
Chair of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership Edwin Booth cutting ribbon to open Sentamu building Nick Dagger Photography

A £9 million teaching block named The Sentamu Building  is being used to help educate over 500 health and social care students at the University of Cumbria’s Lancaster campus. It was officially opened in 2017 and the new teaching block blessed by the Archbishop in January 2018. The Public Lecture that the Archbishop gave at the blessing is available to read here

“The last ten years have marked the crowning achievement of more than 150 years of education in this place,” Dr Sentamu said. “The University of Cumbria has seen thousands of students achieve more than they thought possible and it has been part of transforming communities across the country. It has been a privilege to sit as Chancellor during this period of growth and I am deeply honoured to have my name attached to a building in a place of learning and human flourishing. I pray that the University of Cumbria will continue to go from strength to strength.”

Celebrating the 175th Anniversary of York St John University

In 2016, York St John University celebrated 175 years of excellence.  The Archbishop said: "It is an immense privilege to be Chancellor of York St John University. As we look forward to the next 175 years of providing Higher Education in York, I pray that we will go from strength to strength. May God bless the University: Let it prosper. Ut Vitam Habeant et Abundantius (That they might have life and have it more abundantly)"