A West College Scotland student from Paisley has been named Student Citizen 2016 at a prestigious event celebrating outstanding achievements in all Scotland’s 26 colleges.

of Amanda Allan with her award

 Amanda Allan with her award

Amanda Allan, who is studying Science and also working as a technician in the College’s labs, picked up her award at a ceremony in Glasgow city centre last night (Tuesday 22 November).  Her success means this is the second year in a row a West College Scotland student has won this award.

The judges said Amanda’s “determination to succeed and enthusiasm to help and support others has resulted in a wide range of key achievements”. They went on to say how impressed they were with her leadership skills and her many accomplishments.

Twenty-one-year-old Amanda joined West College Scotland from school in 2013 and graduated this year with an HNC in Applied Science, while also working and studying for a Modern Apprenticeship as a Laboratory Technician at the College.  She hopes to go on to study Biomedical Science at university.

Amanda is also a passionate ambassador for her subject, regularly volunteering to visit schools and youth groups to encourage young people to consider studying science.  She is especially passionate about engaging nursery and primary school children in science and even designs fun experiments for them.

Commenting on her award, Amanda said:

“I am absolutely thrilled to have won this award. I love science, I love learning about it, and I love engaging young people in it.  I have a lot of people to thank for this award, not least the lecturers and staff at West College Scotland who have supported me since I joined.”

Sharon Gardiner, who is the Head of Sector for Sciences, said

“Amanda is a wonderful asset for our College and a true ambassador for science. Having such a positive role model is fantastic for her fellow students and the school pupils she works with.  Amanda has engaged and enthused so many people. We are very proud of her and we know she will go far.”

West College Scotland also won the Essential Skills Award, which was presented to the College’s Head of Essential Skills, Grant Taylor. It recognises the college that has introduced the most imaginative and inspiring ways of allowing students to develop the relevant essential skills which will, eventually, help them get a job.

Grant Taylor and his team

Grant Taylor and his team

College Principal, Audrey Cumberford, said:

“Everyone at the College is delighted to win these very important awards. We are very proud of all our staff and students involved.

“These awards show that we are a College at the very top of its game.”



West College Scotland will use its size, expertise and presence to help further improve job opportunities for the people of Renfrewshire, increase the life chances of everyone living in local communities and assist the regeneration Paisley town centre.

College Principal and Chief Executive Audrey Cumberford and Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan.

College Principal and Chief Executive Audrey Cumberford and Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan.

The College has entered into a Strategic Partnership with Renfrewshire Council, designed to maximise both organisations’ support for each other’s main objectives.  While both have worked closely for many years, the new partnership outlines areas for even deeper co-operation.

Speaking at a launch event, College Principal and Chief Executive, Audrey Cumberford, said:

“As Scotland’s largest college, we are well-placed to bring the benefits of first-class training and education to the people of Renfrewshire.  We believe education is the foundation stone upon which so much else is built.

“In particular, we see ourselves as educational innovators, using modern technologies to allow the people of Renfrewshire to secure good, well-paid jobs and contribute to the local economy. We will give local people access to those digital technologies which are already transforming our lives and work.

“We also believe that we have a role in closing the educational attainment gap between the better- and less-well-off areas of Renfrewshire.

“Getting this right means we are helping Renfrewshire Council meet two of their most important objectives: creating jobs and tackling poverty.”

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said:  “People see the positive changes that are underway in Renfrewshire – Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021, Renfrewshire’s role at the heart of the £1.13billion Glasgow City Region City Deal, and the regeneration of our town centres.

“The challenge facing all of us is to make sure all of our people and communities have the chance to take advantage of these opportunities.

“West College Scotland is leading the way on delivering those shared priorities – particularly in areas such as digital skills, raising attainment and boosting innovation.  The new strategic partnership will strengthen that cooperation and achievement.”

**Artificial Nail Course – ILA Funded**

Starting on the 6 December, you could be a qualified Nail Technician in 12 weeks.


Duration: Every Tuesday Evening for 12 weeks

Time: 5.45pm – 8.45pm

For more information visit here

West College Scotland have 3 new fast track courses in Hospitality starting in January.


Applications are now open – visit their website www.westcollegescotland.ac.uk to apply.

**Starting Tuesday 25 October at Ferguslie!**

Customer Services Principles and Practices (SQA Certificated Level 5).


This course will help you understand the personal factors and skills required in making a positive first impression with customers and dealing with customers’ needs. It’ll help you develop good communication and effective listening skills too. Day/Time: Tuesday 1pm- 3.30pm (12 weeks).

To book a place or for further information email  Kathleen.Brown@wcs.ac.uk or call 0141 842 1015.

Business leaders met with a senior team from Renfrewshire Council this week to hear about the local authority’s plans to boost the region’s profile and economy.


At an event hosted by Amanda McMillan, Chief Executive Officer of AGS Airports – operator of Glasgow Airport, business leaders from some of Renfrewshire’s biggest companies heard about the Council’s wide ranging plans for economic regeneration and tackling poverty.

Renfrewshire Council leader Mark Macmillan was joined at the event by directors from companies including Diageo, Gas Measurement Systems, Gordon Leslie Group, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Intu Braehead, Malcolm Group, Scottish Leather Group, Spectrum Service Solutions, and Thermo Fisher.

Representatives from organisations such as Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce, University of the West of Scotland, and West College Scotland also attended.

Attendees were presented with a copy of the Council’s new draft economic framework, which draws together existing strategies and initiatives to drive the region’s economy forward during the next two years. The draft framework will be the subject of a series of consultations with stakeholders from the private, public and third sectors, with this week’s event being the latest in that series.

Council Leader Macmillan said: “We want Renfrewshire to prosper and grow, and we have a great number of assets within our region to help us achieve that goal. We want to create more and better jobs for local people through supporting growing businesses, attracting new investment and ensuring the foundations are in place to sustain the economy in the long term.

“Working with our partners, we can collectively build Renfrewshire’s profile both nationally and internationally, as part of the wider Glasgow City region and cement our position as Scotland’s economic powerhouse.

“Our Economic Framework provides a clear sense of direction and will be instrumental in achieving a fairer, more inclusive Renfrewshire where all our people, communities and businesses thrive.”

Central to the economic rejuvenation of Renfrewshire is its participation in the Glasgow City Region City Deal, which will deliver an investment of £274 million for Renfrewshire in infrastructure projects. The region’s three projects will create thousands of jobs, a new bridge linking Renfrew to the north side of the river, an investment area with Glasgow Airport at its heart, and the long-awaited rail link between Glasgow Airport and the City Centre, via Paisley Gilmour Street.

The Council is fully committed to making these projects a reality in the near future and the Council leader met with the Transport Minister earlier this month to seek assurances that delivery of the Glasgow Airport Access Project is a priority for the Scottish Government.

Relative to the rest of Scotland, Renfrewshire boasts one of the best qualified populations and highest employment rates in the country. However, the region also has areas of significant deprivation within its boundaries and tackling these inequalities is a key focus of the Council.

That strategy includes Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021, which aims to harness the town’s internationally significant collection of heritage and cultural assets to transform the region’s future. Paisley’s bid is already well under way with awareness of the long-lasting social, economic and cultural benefits which a successful bid would deliver, generating strong support.

Council Leader Macmillan continued: “Bidding for UK City of Culture in 2021 is a once in a generation opportunity to harness culture to help tackle poverty in some of our most deprived communities in Paisley and across Renfrewshire.

“Culture is an incredibly powerful tool in helping to inspire people and support them in realising their potential. We want to give everybody in Renfrewshire the motivation and support they need to feel good about themselves and achieve their own ambitions in life.

“The UK City of Culture bid also has the capability to accelerate our economic vision as it will bring an estimated one million additional visitors to Renfrewshire, delivering significant stimulus to our tourism, creative and cultural economies.”

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Renfrewshire Council is set to seal a wide-ranging strategic partnership with West College Scotland (WCS) aimed at boosting learning, jobs and innovation.

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

The two organisations already cooperate extensively through the local community planning programme which brings together a number of public, private and third sector organisations.

Renfrewshire Council’s Leadership Board has backed proposals that the council and the college build on that joint working through the setting up of a strategic partnership.

A similar strategic partnership agreement was concluded earlier this year between the council and the University of West of Scotland (UWS).

Council and college representatives have identified four key themes where they believe they can deliver ambitious priorities which will improve the wellbeing and life chances of the college’s students and the wider Renfrewshire community.

The four main strategic themes relate to place, economy and jobs, learning, and expertise and innovation.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said:  “These are a lot of positive changes happening in Renfrewshire and we want to continue deliver on that progress.

“There are exciting possibilities arising from Renfrewshire’s role at the heart of the £1.13billion Glasgow City Region City Deal. “Renfrewshire is driving forward new approaches to town centre regeneration, attracting jobs and investment, and giving people and communities increased opportunities.

“And Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021 is showcasing the continuing relevance of our unique cultural and architectural heritage as a driver of economic growth for the future.

“West College Scotland is playing a key role in the partnership effort that is committed to delivering that progress – particularly in areas such as digital skills, raising attainment and boosting innovation.

“We see an opportunity to deliver even more through a new partnership with WCS.

“In this very difficult funding era for all public bodies, we all need to be imaginative and focus our resources on high priority areas of common interest where joint working will deliver public value.

“The themes we have prioritised focus on the opportunities we want to give our community throughout their lives, in education and employment, in providing an attractive location for investment and innovation, and in enhancing the distinctive appeal of Renfrewshire at home and abroad.”

West College Scotland Principal Audrey Cumberford, said:  “This is an exciting development for the people of Renfrewshire and for West College Scotland.  As a College, we offer our communities the skills, training and qualifications to boost job opportunities, as well as local economic growth.  We are already deeply committed to many local regeneration and educational projects and this Strategic Partnership underlines that commitment.”

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

Scotland’s universities and colleges can do more to work with local authorities to support new and existing businesses, according to Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan.

renfrewshire council logo .JPG

The Council Leader will meet with members of the Scottish Universities Research and Commercialisation Group in Paisley today (Tues 13 Sept) to outline the planned investment for the Glasgow City Region City Deal to bring major employment opportunities to the West of Scotland.

Scottish Universities work with around 30,000 businesses a year – a third of these from outwith Scotland and provide a range of services and support – from meeting and events space to advice for innovative companies, learning and development for employees as well as a range of consultancy services.

Councillor Mark Macmillan said:“We want to work closely with our universities and colleges to capitalise on all the benefits they can bring, whether that’s in equipping students now with the skills required for the future or helping create the conditions in which new business ventures and entrepreneurs thrive.

“The economic climate and financial challenges we face in a post Brexit world mean we need to ensure we equip ourselves for change so we can compete in an increasingly global market  and have the right partnerships in place to support our local businesses and communities through those changes.

“We need to work together to ensure we are constantly re-imagining our offering to both the students of today and the entrepreneurs of tomorrow to ensure our support to business does not stand still and remains of value.”

Renfrewshire Council recently signed a new partnership agreement with the University of the West of Scotland which secures commitment to work on shared priorities around education and skills, employment and investment. A similar agreement is planned this autumn with the Paisley-based  West College Scotland.

Councillor Macmillan added: “We have ambitious plans for Renfrewshire and the West of Scotland but we can only maximise the benefits of those plans for the people who live and work here if we work together.”

Places are still available on the following courses at our Ferguslie Learning Centre:
Working with Others
Basic Customer Service
Exploring Wellbeing
Travel and Tourism

Call Kathleen on 0141 842 1015 for further information or to apply.


West College Scotland are pleased to report that  over 60 people come along to their Ferguslie Open Day last week. The good news is that they still have places left on a few courses.


Browse the Learning Programme here:

For further information or to book a place call Kathleen on 0141 842 1015.