Ailsa Caygil & Stuart MacTeir Farewell Message
Well the time has come after 2 years to bid Barony Campus, its staff, and our fellow students farewell. It has been a privilege to attend Barony, and to be one of the first graduates of the newly formed SRUC outfit.
When the news reached us of the potential merger between Barony, Oatridge, Elmwood and SAC it is fair to say that it elicited a degree of fear amongst us. The dining room was buzzing with speculation about the security of our courses, our staff, and most importantly our individual identity.
There were rumours of it secretly being a takeover rather than a merger, and of the farm being shut down and so on, etc, etc. The truth is that after this initial response we settled back into student life quickly, seemingly forgetting about the corporation threatening Barony.
The reason for this is simple; we had nothing to fear. At every stage of the merger we were kept informed by our lecturers and of course our principal, of the progress made and the likelihood of the merger completion. Barony being a small community College benefited us immensely, as the other College’s have been quick to point out that they felt overridden, under consulted and generally left in the dark. This was put to Stuart & myself during a video conference with the other SRUC Campuses. My response?
Well I had to be truthful. The merger has not affected Barony’s courses, content, staff or spirit. It inspired us to think bigger, and in doing so the talented Ali Hastie (Barony Campus, Learning Technologist) developed the idea of our student newsletter within Mahara, the Campuses e-portfolio system. A simple but effective way of communicating with the personnel involved within Barony, and also anyone involved with SRUC.
We have set the standard, and led by example at every given opportunity. The video interviews were challenging, as the thought of appearing on camera was daunting and required a fair bit of arm twisting but we are extremely grateful to Ali Hastie for persevering with us as we both have had an amazing time.
You, as students of SRUC should be proud to have the chance to study with a college which has buckets of potential to grow & develop. The Principal, Professor Bob Webb, has himself said that as students of SRUC you have an abundance of expertise and experience at your disposal. Your enrolment with SRUC does not simply end at Barony Campus, but encourages you to make use of all that SRUC has to offer, from challenging courses run at other Campuses to the research and consulting aspects of the laboratories.
We would like to congratulate our mentors at Barony for their dignified and professional approach to the merger, as we are well aware that pacifying a mob of students is no easy task. We wish all the staff the best of luck, and would encourage anyone with inspirational ideas or interviewing skills to come forward and help Ali Hastie & the newsletter team out. Being part of the newsletter has given us confidence and opportunities galore, the highlight being interviewing Professor Bob Webb at his office in Edinburgh.
Do not sit back and wait for someone else to do it; take chances, seize opportunities, forge lasting friendships, and most importantly have fun!! Enjoy your time at Barony because graduation comes round too quick and life is too short to have regrets.
Wishing you all the best!
By: Stuart MacTeir (HNC Agriculture 2012-13) & Ailsa Caygil (HND Vet Nursing 2012-13)