Youngsters earn special awards
YOUNGSTERS from across Cornwall have graduated from a special university.
A ceremony for the Children's University Trust, offering learning activities outside of school hours, took place at the Tremough campus in Penryn.
Fifty children, some as young as 6, were presented with certificates.
Lisa Neville, from Cornwall Learning, which manages the initiative, said: "It was such a special evening for all who took part."
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Children from schools and clubs in St Austell, Lostwithiel, Fowey, Bodmin, Helston, Penryn, Redruth, Camborne, Penzance, Hayle, Marazion, Ludgvan and St Ives took part.
Student ambassadors from Falmouth University and the University of Exeter hosted the ceremony.
Ms Neville said: "Holding our ceremony at a real university campus with support from role models helps to create a positive, lasting impression of university life."
Every child earned silver or gold awards for hours spent at activities and clubs – they had to attend at least 65 hours.
Loren Trevorrow, of Mounts Bay Academy, received a gold degree for more than 400 hours.
She said: "It has given me confidence to do more extra-curricular activities. I've met new friends and I've had so much fun.
"It's really helped my achievement and my school learning."
Children can take part in activities including sports, music, performing arts, ICT and creative arts.
Ms Neville said: "They have taken part in a huge range of activities including surf lifesaving, judo, Girl Guides, even angling.
"They love recognition for all the learning they do in their free time."
Dancers from the Saturday Club in Penryn entertained the audience of family and friends.
And there was a special message from Siberia, sent by polar explorer Antony Jinman, Plymouth University's explorer in residence.
He encouraged the youngsters to continue exploring their own interests and to aspire to achieve."