Open day experiences promise a taste of student life

March 15, 2022

Have you got what it takes to steer a ship through North Sea waters? Can you defy gravity with gyroscopic wizardry? Could a taste of live drama rehearsals spark a career on stage or screen?

The answers to all those questions and more will be provided this weekend as North East Scotland College (NESCol) and the Scottish Maritime Academy (SMA) welcome hundreds of visitors to open events across the region.

NESCol’s Altens, City and Fraserburgh campuses as well as the SMA in Peterhead will host an open day on Saturday (19 March) from 10am to 2pm.

The event will provide a chance to view the vast array of facilities and speak to subject specialists about a range of full-time, part-time and distance learning opportunities.

A host of activities are on offer across all of the sites, including:

  • The chance to sample the impressive ship bridge simulator at the SMA, used by students from across the world as they train for a career at sea;
  • Hands-on science activities at Fraserburgh, with a range of exhibits including a gyroscopic bike wheel and a slime station, and the City Campus.
  • Food samples from professional cookery students at the Fraserburgh and City training restaurants and kitchens;
  • View impressive work from construction students at the Altens and Fraserburgh campuses and tour the industry-standard workshops, including automotive and engineering facilities.
  • Take in a live drama rehearsal at the Basement Theatre at the City Campus;
  • View hair and beauty demonstrations at the Fraserburgh and City salons;
  • Enjoy an Esports showcase hosted by the computing team at the City Campus;
  • Sample the nursing and care equipment used by Fraserburgh and City students in their training;
  • Take part in games hall activities and fitness suite demonstrations at the top of the landmark City Campus Tower Block, with stunning views over Aberdeen;
  • Try your hand at traditional maritime skills in the SMA net hall.


The activity on campus will be the culmination of an open week programme which includes a series of virtual information sessions building up to the activity on campus.

Applications for full-time courses starting in August are open now and prospective students will be able to gain support and advice to help secure their place.

NESCol Principal Neil Cowie said: “We’re delighted to be opening our doors and inviting the people of the North East to rediscover all that the College has to offer. We are incredibly proud of the fantastic facilities that we have across our campuses and our role at the heart of the region we serve. Everyone is welcome to attend and to get a true flavour for NESCol, whether prospective students or members of the community who are interested in exploring our campuses.”

Restrictions have prevented in-person events taking place since the last open events early in 2020. The College is returning to normal operations in a phased approach and interest in courses for 2022/23 is strong as school leavers and adults returning to education plan their next steps.

Neil Cowie added:  “We’re excited about 2022/23 and looking forward to a vibrant and engaging College experience for all. NEScol is planning for a year free of restrictions, with students benefiting from full access to our fantastic facilities on campus as well as from the online tools we use to supplement that vital hands-on experience.”

To ensure a safe and engaging experience for all visitors, pre-registration for the 19 March open day is required. Find out more and reserve your place.

The open week programme will include the following virtual sessions (4pm unless stated): Tuesday, 15 March – Where Can NEScol Take You? Information and advice on progression in education and employment; Wednesday, 16 March – Applications and Funding, providing information on how to secure your place; Thursday, 17 March – Modern Apprenticeships, all you need to know about an MA; Part-time and Distance Learning (7pm), exploring flexible learning options. Book online.