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Education / College names further and higher education students of the year

A weaver who studied through Shetland College is also named the UHI’s postgraduate student of the year

Shetland College.

JACK Scaife and Rosalynd Mair have been named as Shetland College UHI’s further and higher education students of the year.

Further education student of the year Jack, an NQ interactive media and computing student, was commended for “consistently performing well in class”.

Jack Scaife.

Shetland College said he continued to engage well during lockdown, remaining motivated and engaging with his peers in his role as class rep.

Jack was also part of the Erasmus cohort which travelled to Voss, Norway, which was cut short due to Covid-19.

Senior computing lecturer Euan Robertson, who nominated Jack, said: “Jack deserves to be our student of the year – great work effort, self-motivated, he communicated well and engaged with staff and the wider student group and college activities. We look forward to him continuing onto our HNC Computing award.”

Rosalynd Mair.

BA (Hons) contemporary textiles degree student Rosalynd, meanwhile, received the higher education student of the year award.

Her “well researched and presented written work is complemented by her extraordinary flair, imagination, and technical mastery of textile design”, said the college.

She worked well remotely from home – even going to the length of taking a heavy domestic knitting machine back to her family home in Glasgow on a plane.

“In difficult circumstances she has sought to push the boundaries in her creative practice, delighting her tutors with innovative knitting, drawing on unusual and relevant current topics,” the college said.

Senior creative and cultural industries lecturer Simon Clarke, who nominated Rosalynd, said: “She has worked very well with mixed cohorts that included fine art students. More than being an unusually well-rounded interdisciplinary practitioner she is also a supportive peer to her classmates, bringing out the best in them.

“She is also fantastic towards the staff – a more appreciative and helpful student you could not wish to meet.”

Jack and Rosalyn will receive students of the year certificates and cheques for £100 from University of the Highlands and Islands. 

Both are continuing their studies at Shetland College UHI, with Jack moving onto the HNC computing and Rosalyn continuing on the contemporary textiles degree.

Principal designate Jane Lewis said: “Well done to Jack and Rosalyn on being nominated and winning the student of the year award.

I feel this is a testament to our students’ resilience and hard work that, despite the global pandemic, they have succeeded in their studies.

“Jack and Rosalyn are continuing with their education at Shetland College UHI, we look forward to continuing to work with them and wish them all the best for their future.”

A master weaver from Blairgowrie who completed his MA course entirely online through Shetland College has also been named University of the Highlands and Islands’ 2020 postgraduate student of the year.

Ashleigh Slater. Photo: Kelly McIntyre Photography and Video

Ashleigh Slater, 39, recently achieved his MA in art and social practice whilst studying through the centre for rural creativity at Shetland College UHI.

His achievements include the creation of a community based project to explore the heritage of his home town, through a range of creative workshops offering textiles, printmaking, photography and poetry and, in particular, the life work of one of the town’s most famous sons, Hamish Henderson.

Roxane Permar, a reader in fine art and programme leader for the MA art and social practice, nominated Ashleigh.

She said: “It was fantastic to see Ashleigh’s confidence grow whilst studying, and his achievements academically and in our field of practice have been exceptional. His work is ambitious and he is personally committed.”

Ashleigh said that “receiving this award is not just a reflection on myself, but the outstanding teaching experience at Shetland College UHI and the university’s digital teaching platform”.

“It allowed us to all obtain a real-life experience generating our ‘project’ and evolving our own creative arts practice,” he said.