Forth Valley College's awards ceremony to thank staff for efforts through pandemic

The efforts, commitment and creativity of staff at Forth Valley College were formally recognised when it held its first-ever awards ceremony for employees.

Tuesday, 29th June 2021, 12:30 pm

The online event was thought up by those who work across FVC’s Falkirk, Alloa and Stirling campuses as a way of rewarding one another on the back of a demanding academic year in which staff continued supporting students throughout the pandemic.

Broadcast on June 23, the ceremony was hosted by BBC presenter Amy Irons who announced May Tennant as Colleague of the Year.

More than 70 nominations were received across the six award categories, with 23 submissions shortlisted.

Forth Valley College principal Ken Thomson OBE joined BBC presenter Amy Irons for the educational establishment's first Staff Awards ceremony.
Forth Valley College principal Ken Thomson OBE joined BBC presenter Amy Irons for the educational establishment's first Staff Awards ceremony.

Winners were selected by an expert judging panel including members of the board of management, college fellows and the Forth Valley Student Association president.

Judges said May was the “subject of numerous nominations from her co-workers who highlighted the support that she has given them over this very difficult year”.

The Community Award was picked up by FVC’s hospitality team for its excellent reach and impact, especially the successful delivery of over 1000 free Christmas lunches.

Kasia Slapek collected the Improving Health and Well-being Award for the support and advice she’s provided to classes outwith working hours, while John Dickson’s work making sure the maths team could continue to assess earned him the Innovation Award.

The Inspiration Award, meanwhile, went to Stewart Ritchie, who placed a firm focus on student engagement.

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FVC’s IT department was named Team of the Year for its “huge contribution to keep the college running during the pandemic, helping all other teams to function and for their support for both staff and students”.

Sound production lecturer Barry Frame provided entertainment for the evening with covers of Semisonic’s Secret Smile, along with Ian Whitfield, and also Just the Two of Us, which he recorded and produced with The Voice UK contestant Cameron Ledwidge.

The awards ceremony was developed by a sub-group from the college’s Listening to Employees Forum and organised with support from the communications and marketing team.

Dr Ken Thomson OBE, FVC principal, said: “Congratulations to all our winners who thoroughly deserve their success after all their tremendous efforts over the last year.

“I personally am very proud of everyone who was nominated as they have all gone above and beyond in their roles to provide support, advice and expertise to their colleagues and peers.

“I have to say that this recognition shows an exceptional level of commitment to their professionalism and role, as our entire workforce has risen seamlessly to the challenges presented to them during the pandemic lockdown and shown that each and every one of them are winners in my book. A big well done to everyone.”

Mhairi Archibald, Listening to Employees Sub-group chairwoman, said: “Staff from across the organisation were really keen to celebrate the success of their colleagues and to recognise all the good work going on.

“We thought an annual awards ceremony would be the perfect way to do this and we’ve been really pleased with how many staff have engaged with the event.

“After a challenging year, this was a chance to look at the positives and acknowledge everything we’ve achieved. We’ve appreciated the chance to take forward our idea and hope this will now become a key highlight in the college calendar.”

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