Generous benefactor takes NESCol donation total to £500,000

May 25, 2023

A local business has increased its financial backing of North East Scotland College to £500,000 with the latest in a series of six-figure donations.

The benefactor has entered a third year of support for a range of projects at the College’s Fraserburgh Campus. All are designed to increase opportunities for young people in the town and surrounding area.

The relationship began in 2021 with a £100,000 donation which led to the creation of the Future Skills Zone at the campus. The innovative learning area showcases technology in areas including robotics and 3D printing.

This was followed in 2022 with a £200,000 award by the same business, which has asked not to be named, to create the new Future Skills Workshop at Fraserburgh Campus. The workshop is another hands-on facility which will underpin training in energy transition, including hydrogen and wind power technologies.

A third donation has now been confirmed – with a further £200,000 being made available to enable a range of projects to be delivered at Fraserburgh Campus in 2023/24. These include:

  • The creation of an Esports Arena in response to growing demand to study for qualifications in one of the UK’s fastest growing industries. NESCol offers students exciting opportunities to learn and compete, providing pathways to careers in Esports, coding, game development and related production skills.
  • The purchase and installation of a new CNC plasma cutting system to help meet significant demand for qualified welders in the offshore wind sector;
  • New training rigs for renewables related activity, expanding provision in the Future Skills Workshop.
  • Updated equipment for the fitness suite, supporting students to pursue careers in personal training, coaching and uniformed services. The facilities are also widely used by community groups.
  • Enhancements to the hair and beauty salons to meet growing demand for full-time, part-time and school group provision.

NESCol Principal Neil Cowie said: “The incredible generosity shown by our benefactor is matched by their commitment to the communities we serve, as the extension of the support for the College demonstrates.

“The initial agreement in 2021 has now extended into a third year and this long-term relationship is bringing significant benefit to all those who use the Fraserburgh Campus.

“The projects completed and those in the pipeline help to ensure we have facilities that give students the best possible chance of success in their chosen career, learning in an engaging and inspiring environment and developing skills that are matched to the requirements of industry.”

A spokesperson for the benefactor said: “We value the work being done by NESCol and the ambitions to ensure that Fraserburgh and the surrounding area has a workforce that is well-placed to embrace opportunities now and in the future.

“The latest donation is an endorsement of the innovation that has been demonstrated but also of the relationship between our company and the College which continues to grow and thrive.”

Duncan Abernethy, NESCol’s Director of Business Development, said: “The enhanced facilities will be a major advantage to all who learn and train with the College. The students and apprentices who start their journey with us this summer will benefit from the very latest equipment and for those returning to NESCol after the break there will be new opportunities to build on the experiences to date.”

NESCol is one of the largest providers of vocational education and training in Scotland, delivering to more than 20,000 full-time, part-time and distance learning students each year. The College operates from its main Aberdeen Altens, Aberdeen City and Fraserburgh campuses as well as the Scottish Maritime Academy in Peterhead.

Pictured: NESCol Principal Neil Cowie in the Future Skills Workshop at Fraserburgh Campus.