Outlander star Sam Heughan to receive honorary degree
Outlander star Sam Heughan is to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Glasgow in recognition of his artistic success and charitable work.
Alice Thompson, co-founder of social enterprise cafe chain Social Bite, and TV presenter Fiona Armstrong, Lady MacGregor, who is Lord Lieutenant of Dumfries, are also among those being honoured in a ceremony on July 3 at the university’s Dumfries campus.
Honorary doctorates will also be awarded to Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust; David Mayer de Rothschild, a British adventurer, ecologist, environmentalist and head of the charity Sculpt the Future Foundation; and Andrew Walls, convener of the Crichton Foundation.
The university said the work of those being honoured reflects the core interests of its School of Interdisciplinary Studies at Dumfries.
Head of the school Professor Carol Hill said: “This campus has grown in influence and impact since it was opened 20 years ago in September 1999 to serve the higher education needs of Dumfries and Galloway.
“In this our 20th anniversary year of celebrations, we at Dumfries are delighted to recognise and celebrate the achievements of our honorary graduates, representing a range of talents, careers and charitable interests.”
Heughan started life in the Dumfries and Galloway village of Balmaclellan before moving to nearby New Galloway.
He moved to Edinburgh at the age of 12 and graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama – now the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland – in 2003.
Best known for his role as Jamie Fraser in the TV drama Outlander, he has also done a lot of work for charity.
In 2015 he established his charitable foundation My Peak Challenge, a training, nutrition and support programme which provides participants with a sense of community as they work towards personal goals while raising money for charity.
The actor is also president of Scotland Bloodwise, which raises funds for research to tackle blood cancer.
Last year he ran both the Stirling and Edinburgh marathons to raise money for Cahonas Scotland’s Testicular Cancer Education and Awareness Programme.
Social Bite, co-founded by Ms Thompson and Josh Littlejohn, started as a sandwich shop in Edinburgh in August 2012 and has grown to five cafes and a restaurant across Scotland.
A quarter of its staff are homeless and the charity has received visits from Hollywood stars Leonardo DiCaprio and George Clooney.