Professor Neil Armstrong

Exeter academic and Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor honoured by Brock University in Canada

Brock University is recognising Professor Neil Armstrong for his exceptional academic contributions to the fields of paediatric physiology and sport and health sciences by awarding him with an LLD (honoris causa).

It will bestow the honorary degrees at its Spring Convocation which takes place from Tuesday, June 11 to Saturday, June 15.

“I am pleased that we are recognising Professor Armstrong for his leadership and inspiring contributions to academia and society,” said Brock University President Jack Lightstone. “His achievements mirror the values and vision of our University, which seek to enhance the world of research and creativity, while improving the lives of the communities around us locally, nationally and internationally.”

Neil Armstrong graduated from Loughborough University with BEd and MSc degrees and earned his PhD and higher doctorate (DSc) at the University of Exeter. Following periods of teaching and researching, he served as Head of the School of Postgraduate Medicine before establishing the School of Sport and Health Sciences and becoming its first Head. He also established the Children’s Health and Exercise Research Centre in 1987.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor since 2005 and Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor since 2010, he has specific university responsibility for planning and resource allocation, corporate social responsibility, alumni, internationalisation and sport.

Dr. Armstrong has authored/edited 15 books, contributed 75 book chapters and, in total, co-authored more than 600 publications on paediatric physiology. He has delivered keynote presentations in 43 countries and has co-authored more than 550 conference papers. His research won the first, and to date only, Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher Education to be awarded for research in sports science and medicine.

Dr. Armstrong chaired the Sport Science Panel in the first two UK Research Assessment Exercises and is former Chair (twice) of the British Association of Sport Sciences (BASES) and former President of the Physical Education Association (PEAUK). As the Minister of Sport’s nominee he served two terms as Chair of South West Sport.

He was the first non-retired person to receive the Ling Prize for a ‘sustained and distinguished contribution to the physical education profession.’ He is one of seven Honorary Fellows of the BASES and was the first scientist to be awarded Fellowship of the British (FBASES), European (FECSS) and American (FACSM) Colleges of Sport Sciences/Medicine. He is also an invited Fellow of the National Academy of Kinesiology (USA), the PEAUK, the Society of Biology, the Royal Society of Arts, and the Higher Education Academy.

Dr. Armstrong led the physiology team in the development of the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s guidelines for training elite young athletes and he was a core member of the IOC Youth Strategy Group, which developed guidelines for the fitness and health of children through sport. He has chaired European Pediatric Work Physiology for the last eight years and is currently chairing the South West Region Olympics 2012 Legacy Project. He is President of the Regional United Nations Association.

An active sportsman in his youth, Dr. Armstrong represented England at U15, U18 and University level and played professional football for 10 years.

This award follows an ScD (honoris causa) Professor Armstrong received from the University of Coimbra, Portugal in February.

Prof. Armstrong commented: “I feel very honoured to have received these two honorary doctorates in such quick succession. I am grateful to the University of Exeter for giving me the opportunities I’ve had to contribute to advances in the fields of paediatric physiology and sport and health sciences. The research would not have been possible without the support of a fantastic team of outstanding research students and fellows, several of which now hold full professorships in universities across the world. I’m very much looking forward to attending the graduation ceremony at Brock next week.”

Please visit the Brock University website for more information.

Date: 6 June 2013

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