Investing in young people is as important as ever and businesses with a strong track record of recruiting and developing Scotland’s youth are now being recognised by The Scottish Government through the Investors in Young People Accolades.

There are various pathways open to young people who may not want to leave school and progress to a full time degree course at university especially when there is the opportunity of a job with development prospects. Robert Gordon University’s (RGU) Aberdeen Business School has several young students who are sponsored by their employer on a part time degree course whilst settling into their role in the organisation.

Colleen Bowie and Daisy Summersgill both study Business Management part time while they embark on their careers.

Colleen, 20, works for ACE Winches who was the first ever organisation in this area to achieve the Investors in Young People (IIYP) accreditation.

Colleen said Ace Winches, the leading deck machinery specialist, guided her in the direction of further education and that is why she decided to study the Business Management course at RGU.

She said: “The course has benefited me greatly as it has shown me many aspects of a business that I may not be aware of in my day to day role. ACE Winches has supported me by moving me to a position that is working for BOM support this has allowed me to look at the bigger picture and incorporate what I have learned so far.

“The course has benefited me a lot and I already feel like my work is improving with what I have learnt in the first year and what I hope to study in the upcoming years.”

Daisy, 21, is already in the early stages of her career as an HR Co-ordinator at Ferguson Group but she wanted to gain more knowledge about management and apply it to her work.

She said she would highly recommend this route to others as it is a great way to get your foot on the career ladder while furthering your knowledge.

She said: “It can be quite challenging at times when work is busy but it is worth the time and effort. It’s also a great way to make new friends.”

Daisy, from Inverurie, hopes to progress to HR Advisor in the future.

RGU’s innovative business management course has a flexible approach which includes part time study and a blended method of learning, embracing fact-to-face and on-line distance activities. This means students with no previous academic history but work experience can now work their way to a BA degree, some in just a year, or those like Daisy and Colleen can be assured that going straight into employment from school does not mean they will be unable to obtain a degree in the future; RGU has provided choices for everyone.

Under the guidance of Programme Leader Susan Lawrie, students can join the course at various entry points; some with monthly Saturday workshops in key business subjects and those with prior business management experience can tackle the BA degree online, so it can be studied anywhere worldwide.

Susan said: “It is undoubtedly hard work but it is revolutionising life for hundreds of people who would otherwise never have envisaged graduating with that prized qualification. Previously part-time study involved evening classes – a punishing schedule over several years, particularly after a hard day at work – but the part-time course is flexible, accessible and a departure from the traditional, providing opportunities for all ages and walks of life to widen their horizons while doing their day job anywhere in the world, including offshore.”

Anyone interested in finding out more information about the course should visit the RGU website or email Susan on

More like this…

View all