Ann Sweeney
Ann Sweeney

Ann Sweeney

Inspirational views were enough to tempt mature student Ann Sweeney (34) to sign up for a BA in Art and Design.

“The views from the Creative Industries Department at Forth Valley College’s Stirling Campus are stunning and a real inspiration. I found myself many times just starring out at the Wallace Monument or walking along the river with friends,” said Ann.

“I chose to study at FVC because it ticked all the right boxes. It is easily accessed and offers direct entry into fourth year at Stirling University. Being a contemporary artist, I have a wide spectrum of disciplines and this course gives me the chance to explore these rather than just one discipline subject.”

Ann focused on connecting art therapies with mental health as part of her course work.

“I have learned in depth regarding mental health and how art can be used to communicate and divert the mind’s thinking when in a mental state. I have improved my knowledge in art and confidence in myself and my abilities. I have made amazing friends while enjoying myself.

“Studying at FVC I have found the library a fantastic resource and have used it a lot, it became almost like my second home, especially during our contextual studies subject.

“While researching information for my final project "Nurturing Nature" I worked with Paul Sweeney (no relation) in the FVC Science Department investing my own blood and DNA. He showed me how to extract my own DNA and also to see my blood cells under a microscope.

“This is where I created my idea for my final piece. My Lecturers have been a fantastic support throughout this year and guided me well, especially my mentor Dorothy Balmer.”

Ann said that as part of her course she was able to undergo Personal Development Planning.

“This was a great help in focusing where my career was going to go.  It helped me plan short and long-term goals while giving me an understanding of what to expect whether I was continuing in education or employment.” 

Forth Valley College has a direct entry for BA Art and Design third year students into the fourth year honours level course at the University of Stirling.

“I would recommend the college for its friendly atmosphere and ability to take your education to the next level. The college also has plenty of facilities, including 3D printers, a large print studio, library, a large workshop with amazing technicians and lecturers keen to support you. All in all my time at Forth Valley has been a unique, unforgettable experience.”

For more information call 01324 403000 or visit


Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Email