issue 03 JUNE 2013 The Newsletter of Ayrshire College PRINCIPAL DESIGNATE New STUDENT PRESIDENT For Ayrshire College We’ve had another busy month, with positive news and exciting developments happening both on and off campus. THE new Student President for Ayrshire College is gearing up for an exciting - and challenging - year ahead. Sharon Rennie intends to hit the ground running. WELCOME On his recent visit, Sir Ian Wood, chair of the Wood Commission into the links between Curriculum for Excellence, post 16 education and employers, was very impressed by the Heather Dunk, partnership working Principal, Ayrshire College between colleges, Community Planning Partnerships and employers in Ayrshire. His visit provided Ayrshire with an excellent opportunity to influence future government policy for colleges across Scotland. I’m delighted to announce that Jane McKie, Michael Breen and Bernadette McGuire have been appointed Vice Principals in Human Resources and Organisational Wellbeing, Corporate Services and Learning and Teaching respectively. You can read more from them on the next page. Our workstream groups have had positive update meetings over the last few weeks and the Vision Values and Voice workshops have been a great success. We also have a new Student President, Sharon Rennie, who shares her vision for the future of student life at Ayrshire College in this edition’s newsletter. Have a great break over the summer. I look forward to working with you in Ayrshire College in August. “I’m really passionate about making sure students have better opportunities and high quality learning and teaching,” explains the 34-year-old from Ardrossan. “I think the merger can only be good news for students here in Ayrshire and I honestly believe the new college will quickly become an award winning organisation.” Sharon, who has held the position of Student President at James Watt College twice in the past three years, has more than 10 years’ experience of study and work. She says: “My James Watt journey began all the way back in 2003 when I did a social sciences HNC, and I came back to work at the college as a vocational assistant in 2008. “That was a fantastic role, working with students experiencing difficulties and helping them to realise their full potential. “It was tough at times, and hard work, but it was very rewarding. Out of the 16 people I was working with, 14 went into education and some of them are now doing degree courses.” Sharon, who also has an NC in plumbing and an HNC in construction from James Watt College, was previously a part-time youth worker with North Ayrshire Council and self-defence teacher. “I’ve experienced education from both sides,” she says. “I know what a world of difference good quality learning and teaching can make to someone’s life. Sharon will be supported in her role by three vice-presidents, one for each campus. “We know there is a lot of hard work ahead, and there will be many challenges, not least of which will be communication,” she says. She adds: “But the main challenge for us, as we become Ayrshire College, is the same as it always has been – we need to ensure that the student voice is heard.”