Mary and Ailsa
Education is the winner as youngest and oldest win prizes
Two prizewinners from Forth Valley College’s 2017 Graduation epitomised the College’s dedication to lifelong learning.
Eighteen-year-old Ailsa Dermidy – a former Bannockburn High School pupil - won the Department of Construction Prize while seventy-five-year-old Mary Herriot-Dunlop picked up the prize for Creative Industries.
Ailsa from Stirling was presented with the Most Promising Student in the Department of Construction (sponsored by Scott Direct) at the Falkirk Town Hall ceremony on Tuesday 3 October, while Mary from Alva was presented with the Most Promising Student in the Department of Creative Industries (sponsored by Eden Consultancy) at the Stirling Castle event on Thursday 5 October.
A total of 900 students were eligible to graduate this year from Forth Valley College. More than 250 of them chose to collect their scrolls at events held at the Falkirk Town Hall and Stirling Castle.
John McNally, Chief Operating Officer at INEOS Olefins and Polymers UK spoke at Falkirk Town Hall, while guest speaker at the Stirling Castle event was Alex Paterson, Chief Executive of Historic Environment Scotland.
Ailsa – who also gained six highers at high school - graduated with an HNC Civil Engineering and studied for her school programme qualification for two days a week over the last two years while still at secondary. She is now gearing up for a career in the RAF as an Aircraft Technician (Mechanical Engineering).
Ailsa, said: “I feel very proud and happy to have won this award. It was a surprise and I did not expect it at all. Studying at the college has made me more confident and independent and I would recommend it to anyone at school thinking of doing an HNC.”
Retired civil servant Mary – who graduated with BA Art and Design and is now progressing to do her Honours at the University of Stirling – said: “Without Forth Valley College I would be nothing academically. They provided me with the requirements to go on to university. I would recommend the college and my advice would be that once learned, education is yours and nobody can take it away from you. Students should pick a course that suits them and not the first one they like the sound of. I feel honoured and proud to be considered for such a prestigious award. I am looking forward to producing creative artwork after university.”
Forth Valley College Principal Dr Ken Thomson said: “Presenting the prizes to our youngest and oldest ever graduation prizewinners, gave me particular joy this year as it shows the wide age-range of students who flourish here at Forth Valley College. A big well done to them both.
“Everyone at Forth Valley College would like to congratulate this year’s prizewinners and wish them well as they embark upon their new careers or continued study. They should rightly be very proud of their efforts throughout the course of their studies, they have without a doubt been a credit to themselves and to the College. We are confident they will all make a success of whatever they choose to do.”