Campbeltown graduates honoured in Oban

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A group of Campbeltown students have graduated from Argyll College University of the Highlands and Islands.

More than 90 graduating students and their guests assembled in the spectacular setting of the Argyllshire Gathering Halls, Oban, last Friday for the annual graduation ceremony.

Also attending the event was the president of Scottish Rugby, Dee Bradbury who received an honorary doctorate from the UHI in recognition of her leadership work in sport at a local, national and international level.

In August this year Ms Bradbury became the first female president of the Scottish Rugby Union, and is also the first woman leader of any tier 1 rugby playing nation in the world.

Ms Bradbury has been Scottish Rugby’s representative to Rugby Europe and is also on the women’s committee for Rugby Europe.

An accomplished athlete, Dee has represented Scotland and GB in athletics as junior and masters’ level, and has previously managed Scotland Women U18.

Ms Bradbury has spent her working life since 1984 in based in Oban, where she has championed and encouraged women and girls to play sport, as well as leading and administering sporting activities for everyone.

She was a police officer with Strathclyde Police and latterly Police Scotland and is now retired.

A founding member of the women’s section at Oban Lorne RFC, Ms Bradbury occupied several committee roles within the club and is its honorary president.

She has previously held the positions of chair within Oban Netball Club, Oban Athletics Club and The Lorne Highland Games.

On receiving the award Ms Bradbury said. ‘I feel exceptionally honoured to receive an honorary doctorate and even more so to have my family to witness the ceremony.

‘Sport has been a major part of my life for many years and I am truly blessed by some of the friendships and experiences I have had as a result of my involvement.

‘Little did I think when I took up rugby at the age of 38 that I would receive this accolade.

‘The fact that we live in relatively rural locations should not preclude us from success or personal development.

‘The calibre of all the graduates today is evidence of this.

‘Many have co-ordinated their studies with challenges such as geography, family responsibilities and professional demands.

‘I feel humbled to have been part of this wonderful occasion. Thank you so very much.’

Andrew Campbell, chairman of the Argyll College UHI board of governors of said: ‘We are delighted that Dee has been able to join us today to receive this Honorary Award.

‘Dee’s achievements would have been remarkable had she been based in the central belt but she has reached the top of Scottish rugby from a small, remote rural club and in doing so has encouraged many other small clubs to aim high.’

Oban student Helen McGuigan was awarded Higher Education Student of the Year.

Nominated by no fewer than three members of staff, Helen has consistently achieved excellent academic results and will now progress to the third year of the UHI BA business degree.

Graduates from Campbeltown centre of Argyll College UHI were from left: Caitlin Spree, Ciaran Norris, Amanda McAulay, Karen Robertson, William Megson, Jamie Titterton, Iona McDougall, Thomas Ferguson and Eilish Cameron. NO_c41argyllcollegeuhi01_Campbeltownstudents