IN Scotland, we are fortunate to have 19 universities located throughout the country, not only in all of Scotland’s seven cities but far beyond into our remote and rural communities.
This accessibility, coupled with the no fees policy for Scottish students, means that leaving school at 18, going to university and then hopefully starting work is a fairly typical route for many of our young people.
Not so for local student Natalie Kane, who, with the help of Inverurie-based John Bell Pipeline, was able to realise her dream career in a slightly less conventional route than most students.
She said: “After leaving school I started work at Aberdeen Cyrenians in an administration role where I gained experience with a number of marketing type activities such as event management and fundraising.
“This experience whetted my appetite for all things marketing and so after two years I left and went to Aberdeen College to study full time for an HND in marketing, advertising and PR.”
Two years on and with her HND behind her, Natalie was determined to go one stage further and study for her BA in Communications and Public Relations at Robert Gordon University.
“I was very lucky that through a networking event I attended whilst at college, I met a recruitment consultant who put me in touch with John Bell Pipeline.
“As a result John Bell offered me a part time position to fit in around my study hours and so I was able to self-fund my way through university.”
Three years after, she left full-time work, she has now achieved her academic goals and has secured a full-time position at John Bell as their marketing co-ordinator.
“My job is so varied and there is never a dull moment. One day I can be researching new market opportunities and the next optimising the website or attending exhibitions and networking events.
I really enjoy my job and am so fortunate that I was put in touch with John Bell Pipeline while I was at college as they are so supportive and open to fresh ideas.”
Natalie believes that all students should try and attend networking events if possible so they can meet up with other likeminded people as you never know where it might lead.
“If you are willing to work hard, have a positive attitude and take a bit of a risk things will come right. Try not to worry too much and just think about the end goal,” advises Natalie.