Celebrating ten years of support to University students

The University of the Highlands and Islands Student Development Fund is celebrating its tenth birthday.

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The University of the Highlands and Islands Student Development Fund is celebrating its tenth birthday. Launched in October 2009, it has supported over 400 students to take advantage of personal development opportunities in connection with their course that would otherwise be missed due to financial constraints.

To mark the occasion the university has created an online gallery of recipients from across the partnership to share their personal journeys. 

Speaking about their experience, Christian Gamauf, a Lews Castle College UHI graduate from Glasgow said:

“I hugely benefitted from the Student Development Fund throughout my time at the university. I was able to take part in some amazing opportunities throughout the UK, in Europe and North America. These trips were highly valuable to my student experience and overall development as performing musician. Being able to connect with other traditional musicians from around the world was fantastic.

“I was also able to gain experience in project planning and budgeting, which has been really beneficial for future freelance projects.”

Alison Wilson, Head of Development at the university reflects on how donations transform students’ lives:

“This milestone is an ideal time to reflect on what the fund has accomplished.  Grants totalling over £165,000 have now been awarded, made possible by kind donations from businesses and individuals. The impact of those gifts has been huge. They have helped our students to feel supported, encouraged, and motivated to succeed. They have provided unforgettable development experiences, opened minds to new ideas and helped develop connections with new people and places. They have allowed students to work in local communities and on research contributing to global social issues.

“Looking to the future, we want to continue to help many more students access unique learning experiences and we can only do so by securing new donors to fund future rounds of support for our students.  No matter what size of donation, it really makes a difference and if any local business or individual feels they would like to help in some small way I’d be delighted to hear from them.”

Dedicated donor Thomas Prag, who received an award for 10 years of regular giving to the fund said:

“It came as a bit of a surprise to find out that my regular small donation had been going for so long, but perhaps that’s the point – £5 or £10 a month is relatively painless and builds up, if enough of us do it.  I particularly like being involved in helping students do things outside their course work – it’s what being at university is all about.” 

To find out more about making a donation please get in touch with the team by emailing development@uhi.ac.uk   or visiting the website www.uhi.ac.uk/en/development