Work, earn and learn celebrations

Held at Fraserburgh Campus, apprentices from the Automotive, Engineering and Hairdressing sectors were presented with their certificates in front of family, friends and employers.

Over 130 guests gathered to watch the formal presentation by Duncan Abernethy, Head of Business and Community Development for NESCol.

He addressed the audience and said, “The Modern Apprenticeship programme remains vitally important to the economy of the North East – it is a proven route of how businesses choose to invest today to secure the skills for the future.

“The College remains one of the largest training providers for apprentices in Scotland with close to 500 places – for current and new apprentices. We are now able to offer places in Health and Social Care and we have also introduced foundation apprenticeships in selected schools strengthening the relationship between education and employers.”

Ian Runcie, Employer Engagement Manager introduced the Ian Corney Engineering Award - a memorial award which acknowledges the hard work, determination and effort of those currently undertaking an apprenticeship in Mechanical Engineering. The students shortlisted for the award were Josh Bruce (Thistle Seafoods Ltd), Michael Morrison (Fraserburgh Engineering) and Joe Tait (Sparrows Offshore Ltd).

Michael Morrison from Peterhead was declared the winner by the selection panel. Michael was congratulated for his positivity and resilience and was awarded a certificate and monetary prize by Kirsty Corney and John Foubister.

Visitors received a tour of the new £8million facility for engineering, construction and science. Andrew Cooper, Training Manager at Gray & Adams commented, “I have enjoyed this evening immensely. It is important to recognise the achievement of all apprentices after years of study – my thanks to everyone involved in the evening. I have also been tremendously impressed with the new science labs and workshops for construction, motor vehicle and engineering. This campus has some enviable facilities for students, employers and the wider community”.

Muir Gregor, from Aberchirder, owes his apprenticeship to his Saturday job which he started when he was at school working for Macduff Shipyards - helping out and tidying up. He was offered a job with the company on his 16th birthday and after 12 months he began working his modern apprenticeship in Mechanical Manufacturing Engineering (CNC Machining).

In his first year he spent three days at College studying for his Performing Engineering Operations qualification, followed by one day a week in the second and third year to complete his National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering. His final year was all work based with a college assessor regularly visiting Macduff Shipyards and he gained the final part of his apprenticeship qualification at SVQ Level 3.

“The apprenticeship has flown by”, Muir says. “At the beginning four years seemed like a long time but it’s really not when you enjoy what you’re doing. I am now back at college studying for my HNC in Engineering Practice. My employer is really supportive allowing me to build on my existing qualifications – I have found that if you work hard for your employer then they will do a lot for you.”

North East Scotland College

With over 20,000 students and campuses spread throughout Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire, North East Scotland College is one of Scotland’s largest full and part-time educational colleges, and the single largest provider of vocational education and training in the region.

My employer is really supportive allowing me to build on my existing qualifications – I have found that if you work hard for your employer then they will do a lot for you