Former England captain David Gower OBE has been awarded an honorary doctorate from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).
Gower has been recognised for his sporting achievements, from playing for Leicestershire and Hampshire to captaining England and leading the Sky Sports cricket commentary team.
He became an Honorary Doctor of Letters at Leicester's Curve theatre, where DMU's summer gradutions are held.
"If I have a message for everyone here it is that whatever you have done well so far, follow your heart, follow your passion," he said to the graduating students.
"It will lead you to interesting places and drive you to future success."
He added that he was delighted to be back in Leicestershire to receive an honorary degree in the city where he started his cricketing career.
"I take my fancy hat off to all of those who have worked hard over the past three or four years to gain their degrees," he said.
DMU enjoys close links with Leicestershire County Cricket Club, where Gower played between 1975 and 1989.
Students benefit from discounted tickets and internships while Leicestershire players use the QEII Leisure Centre at the university.
© Cricket World 2014