Royal recognition for University staff

Professor Maria Stokes

The University is thrilled to have received royal recognition for its staff and research in recent months.

New Year Honours

Professor Maria Stokes has been awarded an OBE for services to physiotherapy research in the 2018 New Year Honours. Professor Stokes joined the University in 2004 and leads the University’s Active Living Technologies Research Group. Maria’s interests focus on musculoskeletal health and most of her research sits in the national Arthritis Research UK Centre for Sport, Exercise and Osteoarthritis. The Centre aims to keep people of all ages as active as possible, seeking ways for them to exercise safely so that their joints are protected from pain, injury and osteoarthritis.

Maria’s latest project will involve the first study of the effects of space flight on human muscle tone, thanks to funding from the UK Space Agency. Read more about this on our Research Highlights page.

Professor Stokes said:

Thanks for all the good wishes on receiving this honour. Such an achievement for research can only be accepted as part of a team, so I’m delighted to receive it on behalf of colleagues in the Active Living and Rehabilitation Research Group, in the Faculty of Health Sciences, and all our collaborators.

Members of our community who join Professor Stokes on the New Year Honours list are:

  • Professor Philip Nelson, former Director of ISVR (Institute for Sound and Vibration Research) and Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) at the University, has been awarded a CBE for his services to UK engineering and science
  • Rosemary Squire, Southampton alumna (BA Spanish, 1979) and joint founder of Ambassador Theatre Group (Britain’s most successful theatre company), has been made a Dame
  • Dr Brian Bowsher, Southampton alumnus (BSc Chemistry, 1978 and PhD, 1981) and Chief Executive of the Science and Technology Facilities Council, has been given an OBE for his contribution to national and international metrology

Professor Sir David Payne

Queen’s Anniversary Prize

In addition to these New Year Honours, the University’s world-leading expertise in photonics and fibre-optic technology has also been awarded a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education.

The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes are the UK’s most prestigious form of recognition for a UK academic institution, with approval direct from HM The Queen and Parliament. The prize recognises the decades of innovation by the University’s Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC), which is the largest and longest established centre of its kind in the UK.

Professor Sir David Payne, Director of the ORC, said:

Being honoured with this prestigious award is recognition of just how important photonics is to the UK, and the extensive role the University has played in leading photonics research since the 1960’s.

A delegation from the University will travel to Buckingham Palace to formally receive the prize on Thursday 22 February. Presented by HRH The Prince of Wales, the prize will be accepted by President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Christopher Snowden and Professor Sir David Payne, who will be accompanied to the Palace by four of our PhD students.

Sir Christopher said of the award:

This is a really exciting opportunity for the University to celebrate a really important award, and it also recognises the contributions that we have made over many years.

Sir Christopher has also recorded a congratulatory video which you can watch below.

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