NESCol students benefit from wellbeing and digital access initiatives

March 8, 2022

Students at North East Scotland College have received a share of £10,000 in grant funding and more than 100 new iPads have been distributed in two initiatives designed to enhance wellbeing and ensure digital equality.

The launch of the Student Wellbeing Grant Scheme led to 145 applications being approved. Students will use the funding in a wide range of ways, all with a wellbeing focus. Examples include grants to purchase exercise equipment and art supplies and funding to improve home environments.

In a separate drive to improve online access, the College has distributed 138 iPads to students who met qualifying criteria. The tablets come complete with free internet access and were funded through a successful application to the Connecting Scotland project, run by the Scottish Government.

NESCol Principal Neil Cowie said: “Our ambition at the College is to support every learner to fulfil their potential and we recognise there are an array of factors that can impact on a student’s journey with us.

“We are proud of the support we offer to all students and continue to look for ways to evolve and innovate. The introduction of the Student Wellbeing Grant and participation in the Connecting Scotland scheme are just two examples of the excellent work being done in that area.”

Through the grant scheme’s application process a number of students have also been directed to opportunities to access discretionary funding.

The devices distributed through the Connecting Scotland initiative are part of a wider emphasis on ensuring digital equality at NESCol.

The College’s well-established Bring Your Own Device programme supports students to secure devices to aid their studies, with almost 600 laptops distributed in the 2020-21 academic year alone. In addition, more than 200 laptops have been loaned to students in the current session and almost 100 4G hotspots have been issued to provide internet access for those who did not have connectivity at home.

Neil Cowie added: “NESCol has been at the forefront of integrating digital learning as part of the College experience for a number of years, with online learning sitting side by side with the hands-on experience our courses offer and the benefits of the fantastic facilities across all of our campuses.

“A fundamental part of embracing new ways of learning and teaching is ensuring equal access for all and our teams have worked tirelessly to ensure NESCol students have the tools they require to embrace the opportunities of the digital world.”

NESCol is one of the largest providers of vocational education and training in Scotland. The College operates from its main Altens, City and Fraserburgh campuses as well as the Scottish Maritime Academy in Peterhead and learning centres in Ellon and Inverurie. Applications for full-time, part-time and distance learning courses are open. For further information visit .

Pictured above: NESCol IT Helpdesk staff Kelsey Meanen and Stephen Duncan have been supporting the distribution of the new iPads to College students.