A former Royal Marines commando turned cabbie has driven a taxi for nine years to fund his way through university to become a TV documentary maker.
Matt Jones, 51, has got behind the wheel of a black cab nearly every night to fund his studies at Edinburgh Napier and buy his own film equipment.
His dedication paid off yesterday as he joined classmates at a ceremony in the Usher Hall to graduate with a First Class BA (Honours) in Television.
Mr Jones said: “Colleagues often ask where I find my energy, and sometimes I have to ask myself the same thing, especially at 4am when I have forgotten to go to bed. Perhaps my endurance and resilience comes from my 12 years as a commando.
“There have been sacrifices, the biggest of them being to have had no social life throughout this time, but I am passionate about television and I am now talking to production companies and hoping to make my mark in the documentary genre.”
Mr Jones – uncle of the Scotland Calcutta Cup double try scoring hero Huw Jones – joined the Royal Marines as a teenager, seeing active service in Northern Ireland, The Gulf and on anti-drugs and anti-piracy missions in the Caribbean and South Chine Sea. He added: “It was easy to feel envious of weekend revellers partying in the back of my taxi. But I went home with money in my pocket to pay for my education.”
Meanwhile, international curler Bruce Mouat has graduated with a First Class honours degree.
The 23-year-old joined hundreds of Edinburgh Napier students yesterday at the Usher Hall to be honoured for his academic achievements as he collected his BA (Hons) in International Festival and Event Management with Entrepreneurship. Mouat, from the Slateford area of Edinburgh is former World Junior Curling Champion, World University Champion and Scottish Champion.
Scottish music composer Patrick Doyle also received an Honorary Doctorate yesterday in a ceremony at the University of the West of Scotland at Troon Concert Hall.