Mathematician’s career adds up to 50 years at uni

Mathematician 'Dr Graham Elliott, 71, has been at the University of Portsmouth for 50 years Picture: Sarah Standing (151999-6407)
Mathematician 'Dr Graham Elliott, 71, has been at the University of Portsmouth for 50 years Picture: Sarah Standing (151999-6407)

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HE’S been a loyal lecturer for the last 50 years – and Dr Graham Elliott is showing no sign of reaching retirement.

The 71-year-old has been teaching maths at the University of Portsmouth for half a century, since 1965.

He went straight into work after studying at the university for three years – and he is still teaching there now, working 12 hours a week.

Dr Elliott said: ‘I’m a mathematician and mathematicians do like their subject. It’s not like a job where you do it for a living and you give up as soon as you can.

‘We get a great bunch of students. The students seem to like me and I like them.

‘It keeps me young. It’s nice to see them through.’

And Dr Elliott said he likes to make sure he keeps in contact with those he has taught over the years.

‘I am still in contact with a couple of hundred students from the past. It’s nice to see them succeed. Most of them go on to get very good jobs. A degree in mathematics does lead to good employment and that is satisfying.’

Dr Elliott is from Waterlooville and now lives in Hedge End, so he has always stayed in the area.

And he said he enjoys working at the university.

‘It’s a good atmosphere. I have visited a lot of universities over the years and they do vary. But Portsmouth has a nice feel about it,’ he said.

‘The staff are good and I have been very well treated.

‘It has gone very quickly. It doesn’t seem like it has been that long. The longer I have been there, the quicker it goes.’

And Dr Elliott said he is pleased with the relationship that he has with his students: ‘I think I am approachable which is what they like. The fact that they know I will be there if they needed me makes them feel good.’

Student Alesia Smith said: ‘His hard work and dedication to the university is something that I feel deserves recognition.

‘His kindness and devotion to his students makes him a much-loved and well-remembered part of university life.’