National icons turn recruiters

24th August 2012 at 01:00
The country's newest university has enlisted a foursome of Scottish greats. Henry Hepburn reports

Four Scottish icons have been "recruited" by Scotland's youngest university to attract new students to the Highlands and Islands. A campaign targeting young people in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling and Aberdeen will see images of the famous Scots - Robert the Bruce, Sir Walter Scott, Denis Law and Donald Dewar - sporting the colours of the University of the Highlands and Islands, which has nearly 1,000 extra places available this year.

The Bruce statue at Stirling Castle, the former first minister's likeness in Glasgow's Buchanan Street, Edinburgh's memorial in Princes Street to the Scottish historical novelist, and the newly unveiled bronze tribute to football legend Law at Aberdeen Sports Village, have all been given a photographic makeover showing the figures sporting university colours and "I (heart) - UHI" badges.

It is part of the drive to encourage youngsters in the four cities to join the 7,500 students already on undergraduate and postgraduate courses across the Highlands and Islands. A mobile "campus" visited the four cities this month to give school-leavers and others a chance to learn about the university.

UHI, which gained full university status in February, 2011, comprises 13 colleges and research centres in a dispersed campus stretching from Shetland to Argyll, and from Perth to the Western Isles.

Many of its courses reflect the geography and history of the area, including archaeology, adventure tourism, energy engineering and environmental science.

One student is Alison Keir, 26, originally from Glasgow and now based in Orkney, where she is carrying out research for a PhD on coastal archaeology.

"I fell in love with Orkney archaeology during my visits here and I don't think there is a better place to study the subject, as the islands are so rich in ancient sites," she said.

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