St Andrews in the News

April 2016

Welcome to the April edition of St Andrews in the News – the monthly e-newsletter that keeps all our alumni, parents, donors and friends in the loop about current news, information and events.

University news
View a full list of news from around the University

University to lead evolutionary research project

An international team of experts led by Professor Kevin Laland of the School of Biology at the University of St Andrews has been awarded a £5.7 million grant to further our understanding of evolution. Read more

St Salvator's Chapel Choir launches third album

The Choir launched its third album of choral music on the Sanctiandree label with a complete performance of Bach's Mass in B Minor on Sunday 10 April in St Salvator's Chapel. Read more

New York May Ball!

The University of St Andrews New York Alumni Club is holding its annual May Ball on Saturday 14 May at the Down Town Association. This promises to be a great event, with interesting performers and a great DJ. Tickets available now

Davis Cup Trophy comes to St Andrews

Local schoolchildren, invited guests and members of the public got the chance to have their photo taken with the Davis Cup Trophy recently when it arrived at the University Sports Centre as part of its victory tour. Perhaps the four court indoor tennis centre planned for phase 3 of the Centre's redevelopment will produce a future Davis Cup trophy winner! Read more

Work of a forgotten photographer revealed

Dr Luke Gartlan, lecturer in the School of Art History at the University has published the first comprehensive study of one of the major photographers and personalities of nineteenth-century Japan. The collection reveals the everyday people and places of the era and even the photographer in his studio. Read more


Successful student telephone campaigns

This academic year's student telephone campaigns have raised gifts and pledges of over £300,000 for key projects, including the Student Activities Fund. Read more

Reaching beyond barriers to restore nature and hope

The St Andrews Prize for the Environment Lecture this year is being given by Dr Axel Moehrenschlager from Calgary Zoo in the School of Medicine Lecture Theatre at 6pm on Wednesday 20 April.

He is going to be talking about the development of wildlife conservation and how it is vital not only for the animals affected, but also for humans, too.

Register Now: Patrons' Programme

8–9 September 2016
We invite you to join us for a unique 'behind–the–scenes' event exclusively for supporters of the University. You will have the opportunity to visit some exceptional private homes surrounding St Andrews, to interact with academic staff members, attend lectures and experience traditional Scottish fare and entertainment all while soaking up the full St Andrews experience.

To register your interest in this exclusive event, please contact us: or call +44(0)1334 461901

Find out more here, or for those in the US/Canada, here

Alumni news
View a full list of alumni club activities

The Arnold Palmer Invitational 2016

Join us in St Andrews this summer on Saturday 25 June for a memorable golfing experience on The Castle Course, the newest addition to St Andrews Links at the Home of Golf, followed by a prize-giving dinner at the St Andrews Links Clubhouse, overlooking the Old Course. This one-day tournament will bring together alumni, parents, friends and supporters of the University's performance golf programme, Saints Golf. Read more

Across Canada by story: a coast-to-coast literary adventure

Douglas Gibson (MA 1966), the renowned Canadian publisher, is bringing his sell–out show Across Canada by story: a coast–to–coast literary adventure to the UK. Find out what the prize–winning authors he has edited and published are really like! As well–known Canadian author Alistair MacLeod says, 'No–one has done more for Canadian literature than this man, Douglas Gibson.'

Tickets are available for his performance in London (Canada House, Trafalgar Square, Tuesday 19 April).

Douglas is using the tour to help raise funds for The Canada Room in the Students' Association.


Scenes from Student life: a gift of raisins

The first episode of a new Radio 4 series 'Scenes from Student Life' which aired on Monday 18 April at 1.45pm.

In 'A gift of raisins' Ellie Cawthorne looks at the tradition of Raisin Weekend at the University of St Andrews, and how it has evolved. The series will be available on the BBC iPlayer shortly after broadcast. Listen Again

Alumni events worldwide

The next St Andrews Alumni - Edinburgh drinks will take place on Thursday 21 April from 6.00pm to 8.00pm at 99 Hanover Street. Contact

San Francisco
Meet fellow St Andrews Alumni and members of the Oxford and Cambridge clubs at The University Club of San Francisco bar on Tuesday 19 April from 7.00pm to 9.30pm. (800 Powell Street, San Francisco, CA 94108). The Club meets on the third Tuesday of every month. Register for this free event

Cape Town
Alumni are invited to join Dr Anne Mullen (Vice-Principal International), Prof Derek Woollins (Vice-Principal Research) and Mrs Julie Ramsay (Director of Admissions) for an informal alumni drinks evening on Monday 2 May from 7.00pm to 9.00pm at The Westin Cape Town (Lower Long Street, Cape Town 8000). To register please email

Hong Kong
Dr Silvia Paracchini from the School of Medicine presents her talk 'Are left-handed people really going to die younger?' on Wednesday 11 May from 7.00-9.00pm at The Foreign Correspondents' Club. To register email

The University Rector, Catherine Stihler, MEP, will host an Alumni Drinks Reception at the EU Parliament, Members' Salons on Tuesday 24 May from 7.00-9.00pm. Registration required by email to

Washington DC
There is an exciting evening coming up in the Washington Navy Yard on Tuesday 24 May at 6.30pm! This is one of federal city's oldest institutions and will be an interesting event, with a presentation from Rear Admiral Yancy B Lindsey (Commandant Naval District Washington) highlighting the state of the United States Navy, the role of Naval District Washington and his naval career. Afterwards, St Andrean Ed Furgol will provide a tour of the navy yard. Participation is limited to 24 people. Contact by 12.00pm on Thursday 12 May to book your place.

MadGroup Reunion – 70th Anniversary reunion

Calling all former members of the Madrigal Group! Celebrate the 70th anniversary of the group on Friday 27 May at 7.30pm for their Summer Tour Opening Concert and on Saturday 28 May at 7pm for a relaxed evening and sing-song. For more details contact Edwin Wilton-Morgan and follow the group on Facebook.

What's on

Russell deCarle Trio

Byre Theatre, Friday 22 April at 8.00pm

St Andrews Chorus: Brahms Requiem

Younger Hall, Saturday 23 April

See the Byre’s full programme
See the Music Centre's full programme

Objects Unpacked series: Birds' eggs

Egg collecting in the past had a devastating effect on bird populations. Hear about the issues and current regulations on birds' eggs as postgraduate student Catherine Anne Cassidy discusses her project to display a collection of historic bird eggs donated to the Bell Pettigrew Museum in 2012. Free, but booking essential. MUSA, Thursday 5 May from 1.15pm to 1.45pm

See MUSA's full programme

General Council

General Council Assessor to the University Court Position

Congratulations to Mr Nigel Christie, MA 1971, Political Economy & Mediaeval History, on his re-election to the position of General Council Assessor to the University Court. Mr Christie will serve a four-year term from 1 August 2016.

For a breakdown of the election results, please visit the General Council website.
Alumni authors

Shooting Hipsters


Christiana Spens, MLitt 2013

Price: £8.99 (paperback) £6.90 (Kindle edition) from Amazon

Christiana Spens will be talking about her work on Wednesday 27 April at 8pm at Topping & Company Booksellers, 7 Greyfriars Garden, St Andrews. Book your place now!

Joaquin Rodrigo – Voice & Vision


Raymond Calcraft, MA 1961 and Elizabeth Matthews

Price: £12.99 (paperback) from Amazon


Pursuing Happiness: Reading American Romance as Political Fiction

Dr Lauren Vivanco, MA 1996 and PhD 2001

Price: £12.94 (paperback) £5.44 (Kindle) from Amazon

Graduate Uday Pratab Singh (MA 2011, International Relations) meets fellow St Andrews graduate, HRH The Duchess of Cambridge, at the Queen's Birthday Party at the High Commissioner's Residence in Dehli earlier this month


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