Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has received his honorary doctorate from The University of Manchester.
The special ceremony took place at Old Trafford on Thursday, with the initial award announcement made in July last year, but due to the pandemic, an official in-person ceremony was put on hold.
The prestigious award is for his ongoing charity work and well-publicised campaign against child poverty off the field, as well as his outstanding sporting achievements on the pitch.
The accolade is said to be the highest honour the University can bestow.
At just 23 years old, Rashford became the youngest recipient of an honorary degree in the history of The University of Manchester.
The English footballer follows in the footsteps of the Red Devils’ legends such as Sir Alex Ferguson and Sir Bobby Charlton, who have also been honoured by the University in the past.
“To be here in the presence of a great such as Sir Alex, and those who have played a huge role in my journey to be where I am today is special,” said Rashford.
“I’m here to receive my Honorary Doctorate for my work around child poverty. Yesterday, millions of families across the UK lost a lifeline and a means of staying afloat. A move that could see child poverty rise to 1 in 3 children. For that reason, today is bittersweet.
“It’s time that representatives got out into communities like mine. It’s time they saw first-hand the true measure of struggle. COVID-19 can no longer be used as an excuse.”
On presenting Marcus with his honorary degree, Professor Rothwell said: “Marcus is an exceptional young man who continues to demonstrate a sense of community and generosity that goes well beyond his years.
“Our University also has social responsibility at its core, and we are extremely proud to share these values with Marcus. It really is an honour to finally present him with this well-deserved award on behalf of our institution.
“His ongoing charity work and high-profile campaigns not only help millions of people across the country, but inspire many more to try and make a difference themselves. Long may it continue.”
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By FARPost Reporter