Distance Learner Named as Orkney College UHI Student of the Year

An exceptional student who doesn’t let distance get in his way has been named Orkney College UHI student of the year.

William Frost (34) is studying for a MLitt in Orkney and Shetland studies through the University of the Highlands and Islands from his home in Aarhus, Denmark.

Despite also working part-time as a language consultant, William has been commended for his academic distinction, his determination to succeed as a distance learner and his active engagement with and encouragement of other students.

The postgraduate student, originally from Carnoustie in Angus, is currently organising an international online conference to help other distance learners. The Northern Studies Virtual Conference will give students who may not usually be able to take part in conferences the opportunity to do so.

Due to finish his MLitt this summer, William has already secured a British Library scholarship to continue his studies as a PhD student at the University of Sheffield’s Centre for Nordic Studies.

The scholarship comes as little surprise to UHI tutor Silke Reeplog who said: “As a distance learner, William displayed demonstrable determination to succeed. He has not only supplied consistently high-quality work, but also eloquently shares his knowledge with other students.”

Ragnhild Ljosland, another of William’s tutors, added: “William’s quality of work far exceeds expectations. His level of thinking, academic analysis and argumentation is on the level of a PhD student or, in some cases, ready for submitting to an academic journal.

“He also puts enormous effort into staying in touch with the student group and his tutors. He's always up to date with what is going on, is prepared for lectures and reads widely in addition to the curriculum, making him a resource other students can draw on.”

Speaking about becoming the Orkney College UHI student of the year, William said: “I chose to study with the University of the Highlands and Islands because of the flexibility it offered, but I never imagined the doors it would open; presenting at conferences from Vienna to Edinburgh, organising an online conference and now receiving a PhD scholarship.

“The lecturers and students at Centre for Nordic Studies have been a constant source of inspiration and support, and I am indebted to them and UHI for helping me to reach my potential – the award is as much theirs as mine.”

William wins £150 as the Orkney College UHI student of the year and will be presented with his award in St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, in September. He will also go forward as a candidate for the overall University of the Highlands and Islands student of the year award.


Photo caption: Orkney College UHI student of the year, William Frost, at St Andrews

Notes to editors

The University of the Highlands and Islands comprises thirteen further and higher education colleges, specialist colleges and research institutions, distributed throughout the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. They are bound together through constitutional, management and academic structures, and co-ordinated through an executive office. Collectively, this is referred to as the UHI partnership.

There are currently over 7500 students studying on undergraduate and postgraduate courses or undertaking postgraduate research with the University.

The University of the Highlands and Islands is the only university with campuses and headquarters based in the Highlands and Islands. Its mission is to strengthen and develop the social, economic and cultural prospects of the region. It uses a blend of learning methods, including traditional classroom face-to-face teaching, video-conferencing tutorials and lectures and virtual learning environments and other IT media.

The University of the Highlands and Islands is a limited company registered in Scotland No. 148203. Scottish charity No. SC022228. Registered office: 12B, Ness Walk, Inverness, IV3 5SQ.


Contact: Susan Szymborski
Phone: 01463 279210
Email: susan.szymborski@uhi.ac.uk
Website: http://www.uhi.ac.uk