Edinburgh College scooped two honours at the sector’s major awards ceremony last night – celebrating the talent of both its students and staff.
Dean Clark, a 32-year-old HND Retail Management student, was named Student of the Year at the College Development Network (CDN) College Awards for the positive impact he had on others while establishing the College’s first ever student-led shop – Bizarre Bazaar.
Dean, who is from the city’s Wester Hailes area, project-managed a team of his fellow retail students as well as working alongside students and staff from the College’s Built Environment and Creative Industries faculties to create the new shop in a bid to gain first-hand experience of setting up and running a new small business.
In addition, Dean recruited volunteers from a programme aimed at supporting people seeking employment, a programme Dean previously went through himself. References have since been provided for the volunteers to help them in looking for future work.
The College’s second prize of the night was awarded to the Marketing team. The collected the Marketing and Communications category for their ‘Your Future Starts Now’ exam results campaign. The team developed an integrated campaign aimed at increasing applications, application conversion and to improve customer service following Exam Results Day. The team’s activity led to a 258% increase in applications compared to the same three-day period the previous year.
In addition, recent BMus graduate Jack McKenzie was commended in the Student of the Year category after he saved the College’s orchestra from disbanding and led it to play shows across Scotland. The team behind the creation of Engineering’s HNC Mechanical Engineering (Enhance Distance Learning) was also commended in the Digital Learning category.
Student of the Year Dean Clark said: “I’m thrilled to have won this award. When we set out to create Bizarre-Bazaar, we really just wanted to get some real-life experience of retail, however, it grew to be an amazing project which brought different areas of the College together. To receive this recognition for this is brilliant and makes me feel very proud.”
Principal Audrey Cumberford said: “What a great achievement for the staff and students at Edinburgh College.
“Congratulations to Dean, our retail superstar who achieved so much during his time with at the College. His legacy is more than the retail space he worked hard to create, but also the impact he had on classmates and lecturers. Well done, Dean.
“Our Marketing team are also thoroughly deserving of their award. The team worked tirelessly on a terrific campaign to ensure school leavers and others receiving exam results could make the best possible decisions to help them pursue their chosen careers.
“Well done also to Jack McKenzie and our Engineering curriculum team who received commendations on the night.
“Everyone at Edinburgh College is very proud of you all, congratulations.”