Picture Gerard McCarthy
On Friday 18, a ceremony was held to commemorate the renaming of the bridge that leads into UCC from the main gates the “Alumni Bridge”, to pay respects to— naturally— the college’s dedication to supporting its alumni.
Participants walked from the Quad to the bridge, with the graduates of last week’s ceremonies urged to attend the renaming ceremony at each conferring. One graduate from each of the last fifty years was in attendance, as well as a graduate who was born in 1929— the year of the bridge’s completion.
Speaking at the ceremony, UCC president Patrick O’Shea said, “UCC’s Alumni Bridge is a hidden gem. For ninety years, it has silently borne our students as they pass back and forth to the University. Today’s ceremony will ensure that it becomes a more visible part of our rich heritage, a place of personal and public ritual to further strengthen the bonds that bind our alumni to their University”.
Also in attendance were husband and wife Phillip and Catherine Ryan, who met while studying at UCC in the late 1960s. A photograph of them holding hands as they walked over the bridge was published in the Evening Echo at the time. “Little did we know when we met that we would be back to UCC over 50 years later to celebrate and participate in this historic event,” they commented, “UCC has played a significant part in shaping our futures. We have very fond memories of the Alumni Bridge”.
UCC Alumni Network have been urging this year’s graduates to connect with other alumni, with 185,000+ alumni across 67 countries. At the conferrings, graduates were given ‘Class of 2019’ pins and invited to join the network, which includes professional support and mentoring from other alumni.