Colin Scott works as a Managing Director at Elgin Truck and Van Centre and says that if you want to get into his trade try and do so as early as you can. There are lots of opportunities, not just as Mechanical Technicians, but also as Parts Advisors, Customer Service Advisors, Panel Beaters, Painters, and Customer Service Advisors. He believes that the best route into the trade is as an Apprentice.
Alan Weston currently works as a watch commander at the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and has done so since 2006 and his advice to young people is to be positive and never give up as it took him 8 years to join the wholetime fire service.
Distilling is a fantastic industry that has so many opportunities for so many people, from production roles for people interested in chemistry and engineering to the physical workforce in warehousing. Of course, Visitor Centres are the ideal place to learn more about a site and other roles within a business, so you can never go wrong with a seasonal tour guide position to start with!
I would advise people to keep an open mind to change when joining this industry. The demands of customers big and small come thick and fast and sometimes require adaptability from the workforce from one end to the other. Be keen to learn, and always trust your gut, if something doesn't look or feel right, ask the question.
After he left school, David went on to do a four-year-long engineering apprenticeship. He then went to work for a variety of different engineering companies before starting QHS Scotland Ltd in 2007 with his current business partner Robert Forsyth. He says that getting and completing his apprenticeship was the most important part of his career to date. The training in multi-disciplines that he received during his apprenticeship is the only reason that he could have started a company and carried out the different engineering disciplines he does today.
Andrew undertook a four-year apprenticeship at Elgin Training Unit (Historic Scotland Yard behind the Cathedral) which gave him a starting point in the industry and he has progressed from there. He then set up his business with Steven Harper (Harper and Allan Masonry Ltd) in 2015 which currently has seven tradesmen and five apprentices in their employ. He said that it was hard work to begin with but that it was worth the effort long term.
Eilidh works as a support worker at the RAF Chilcare Centre in Lossiemouth and says that her advice to young people who want to get into childcare is to try and get experience in the sector, most settings will really appreciate and welcome students in to let them get a taste of what it’s like to be in this job role, it’s really good to get an idea of what it’s like before deciding what path you're going to take and it will also give you that confidence boost when you do start as you’ll have a better idea of what you need to do. DYW is also always there to support you when you're unsure of how to get to where you want to be and they also advertise apprenticeships and job roles constantly which is really useful.
Sarah didn't know what she wanted to do when she left school. But in her fourth year, she joined the Career Ready programme and carried out her four-week internship with Springfield Properties. She was then offered a full-time job following this. She has been at Springfield for seven years now and loves that every day is different, no two days are the same! Her advice to young people is to take advantage of any opportunities presented to you, as you never know where they will lead!
Kevin Mcaloon initially left school to go to college to study tv and film but is now working as a self-employed Sports Therapist and loves meeting new people. He says that you can work hard making someone else's dream come true but you’ll always work harder to make your own come true.
Jo Robinson - Marketing Campaign and Content Manager
Choosing a career or an industry feels like a really important step when you're just starting out. I've changed jobs dozens of times and switched sectors several times too, and each time you just learn a new way of doing things. My advice to people at the start of their careers is to not overthink it; do what you enjoy, or think you might enjoy, because it's not the final step - it's only the next step for you.
Claire Sim - Area Manager
Claire Sim is an Area Manager with Skills Development Scotland (SDS), covering Moray, Orkney and Shetland. Claire loves working with people and tells us that any school subjects are helpful for your career because the most important thing to gain is life experience and being involved in as wide a variety as possible.
Hazel Fraser - Director
Hazel Fraser is a Director at The Training Folk, offering a bespoke training service for local people. Construction is a very rewarding career. In the past it has been given the reputation of being only for those that could not get into further education. There are a huge range of roles and most of the skills you need for these can be applied to many different types of jobs. Construction is booming and has a great future.
Katy Cameron - Community Impact Advisor
When Katy Cameron left school, she had little idea about what she wanted to do as a career. She decided to a HND in Legal Services and, whilst doing this, realised she had an interest Law but didn't necessarily want to pursue it as a career. Whilst looking for other available jobs, she came across her current role - Community Impact Advisor with Robertson - and now believes that she is at the beginning of her desired career.
Pete Taylor - Retail Director
In his current role as a Retail Director with Specsavers, Pete Taylor finds that each day presents a different challenge and can truly say that he is never bored in work. He constantly learns new things and loves the interactions with colleagues and patients alike. His current role has allowed Pete to utilise all the various skills he has developed over the years and believes everything he has done in the past was very much pointing to the future all those years ago even if he didn't realise it at the time.
Jackie Andrews - Head of Academic Partnerships
After school, Jackie Andrews went to study at college and worked in several companies in Edinburgh. After moving north, she joined Moray College as a Lecturer and quickly decided that she liked this opportunity and undertook a number of qualifications. Fast forward thirty odd years, having come through the ranks of teaching, Jackie is now Head of Academic Partnerships and works closely with the local authority, local community, DYW Moray and local businesses.
Brian MacAulay - Malt Distilleries, Spirit Supply & Warehousing Group Manager
Brian MacAulay is the Malt Distilleries, Spirit Supply & Warehousing Group Manager with Chivas Brothers and also DYW Moray's Chair. After leaving school, he got a job as a Distillery Operator but didn't really know what he wanted as a long-term career. After 3-4 years of learning and developing in the job, demonstrating a desire to learn more, he took on different tasks which were attributed to management roles. Brian tells us that, over his thirty year career, he has only stayed in a role for an average of three years, but that this demonstrates the different opportunities people have in large organisations if they are up for exciting change and challenge.
Hayley Anderson - Creative Practitioner
Hayley Anderson is a Creative Practitioner, running her own business Buff and Blue Prints. Having always been creative, this gives Hayley the opportunity to highlight her own work as well as support others to discover their own creative talents. Find out more about her career journey and how she has gotten where she is now!
Isla Wilson - Communication Coordinator and Planner
When Isla Wilson left school, she wanted to get straight into work and earn some money. In 2020, she started studying a Graduate Apprenticeship degree course with Robert Gordon University (RGU) and has found this to be a brilliant opportunity. She tell us that you might not get straight into doing exactly what you want to do right away but you can still build experience, skills and knowledge that can be used to help get you where you want to be in the future.
Richard Cavaye - Head of Business, Economics and Enterprise
Richard Cavaye has had many different roles throughout his career, including many teaching roles, and his favourite thing about the work that he does is working with young people from all over the world. Richard wanted to work in the education sector because it was a change of career and a chance for him to give something back following his previous career.
Heather Hagen - Student Services Assistant
Heather Hagen has worked at Moray College UHI since 2004 and has been a Student Services Assistant for ten years. Heather tells us that she loves helping students with the many queries that they bring to Student Services and there is nothing better than hearing them say “Thank you so much for helping me”.
Sean McAngus - Journalist
When Sean McAngus left school, he went onto study a HND in Practical Journalism and work as a reporter, including with local weekly newspapers. Sean is now a Journalist with the Press and Journal, Scotland's oldest daily regional newspaper. About his role, he enjoys meeting different people and telling people's eye-opening stories.
Kiera Wright - Graduate Apprentice Engineer
Kiera Wright went on to study engineering when she left school. Now working in the renewable energy industry and as a Graduate Apprentice Engineer with AES Solar, a Moray-based solar panel manufacturer and installer, she tells us that there are always new opportunities to learn.
Craig Smith - Development Chef
Craig Smith is a Development Chef with Baxters, a local food manufacturer. From an early age, Craig wanted to be a Chef and his path has taken him to different roles and locations. He tell us that every day is different, whether it's making up soups or jams or chutneys, and that everyday is a school day. If you are dedicated, the rewards are there.
Mike Ross - Business Owner
Mike Ross is the owner of a vehicle tuning garage. Mike stayed on through his sixth year of school, and then took a couple of years out to work and decide which career he wanted. It took a while for the penny to drop that cars were his passion. However, once it did, he signed up for an apprenticeship at a local car dealership and won a number of awards for doing his best. If you have the ambition, you can do anything!
Michaela Munro - Financial Accountant
Michaela Munro is a Financial Accountant with Moray College UHI. Originally, she applied to study Law at Robert Gordon University (RGU) in Aberdeen but decided that she was not ready to move away. Michaela then went on to study a HND in Accounting at Moray College UHI and worked in a local accountants and progressed in different jobs and positions each time.
Kym Laxy - Mortgage Adviser and Business Owner
Kym Laxy is a Mortgage Adviser and Business Owner, creating her own company in Elgin - Mortgage Advice Bureau. Kym tells us that she didn’t want to work in the industry when she was at school but that she sort of fell into it when looking for a job after school.
Barry Weiland-Jarvis - Neighbourhood Officer
Barry Weiland-Jarvis is a Neighbourhood Officer with Grampian Housing Association. Barry tells us that throughout his career he has gone from 'a perfect job' to jobs where he is just making money to live. He believes that people should never be afraid of failure and taking a risk to get to where you want to be.
Fiona Campbell - Senior Business Development Manager
Fiona Campbell is Senior Business Development Manager at Robert Gordon University (RGU) in Aberdeen. After school, Fiona went to university to study English and Film and Media Studies and wanted to work in television. Working with the Graduate Apprenticeship programme in her current role with Robert Gordon University (RGU), Fiona would highly recommend an apprenticeship.
Steve Richards - Senior Business Development Manager
Steve Richards is a Senior Business Development Manager at Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). However, like many people, Steve's ideas of what he wanted to do after leaving school changed over time.
Fiona Rodger - SVQ (Scottish Vocational Qualifications) Manager
Fiona Rodger always wanted to work in the health and social care sector. After leaving school in fifth year, she began working part-time in a local care home and loved it. She then went on to pursue a career in social care and progressed through different roles and now she is a SVQ (Scottish Vocational Qualifications) Manager.
Hannah Levy - Visitor Centre Assistant Manager
Hannah Levy tells us that she had a few career ideas and had applied to university during sixth year. However, she felt too young to make a big decision like choosing a university degree and so decided to go with the flow and joined the team at Glen Moray Distillery and is now the Assistant Manager of the Visitor Centre.
Karen Gerrie - Lead Specialist and Laboratory Co-ordinator
Karen Gerrie left school to start working in an accountants office but knew straight away that it wasn't the role for her. Since her move to work in a laboratory and study chemistry at university, Karen has worked in the distillery industry - starting off as a laboratory technician and then becoming a distillery chemist and then onto become a development chemist and now she is Lead Specialist and Laboratory Co-ordinator with Chivas Brothers Ltd.
Alanna Magee-Shamaan - Marketing and Business Assistant
Alanna Magee-Shamaan is a Marketing and Business Assistant with Moray College UHI. When she left school, she chose a Modern Apprenticeship in Business and Administration and, eight years later, she looks back very fondly and credits her Modern Apprenticeship as such an important part of her journey.
My main goal is to have a greener and more environmental planet
Discover more about Peter Meldrum's journey from Marine Engineer to his recent work with distilleries, helping them in their bid to becoming net zero.
Sarah Barnes - Programme Manager
Sarah Barnes is the DYW (Developing the Young Workforce) Moray Programme Manager. In Sarah's career story, she says "I really enjoy learning about the different businesses in Moray and helping them engage and support young people. It is a very rewarding role. I also enjoy supporting my team."
Kelly Cormack - School Co-ordinator
Kelly Cormack is the DYW (Developing the Young Workforce) Moray School Co-ordinator for Buckie High School and Keith Grammar School.
Carinne Taylor - School Co-ordinator
Carinne Taylor is the DYW (Developing the Young Workforce) Moray School Co-ordinator for Elgin Academy and Forres Academy.
From children's camcorder to award-winning videographer
In 2005, Brodie Young, a 24-year-old videographer from Fochabers, received a children's camcorder with a screen the size of a 50p for Christmas and found an instant fascination set in to stay.
Dave Pilkington - Taxidermist
From sales to taxidermy! Find out about Dave's career journey, other passions and advice to young people.
Shannon Green - Care Manager
Shannon is a Care Manager. Find out about her journey from Elgin Academy to Aberdeenshire Council and what skills she has developed which have enabled her to do this.
Sarah Westwood - Assistant Manager
Sarah Westwood, 20, is an Assistant Manager with Elgin Sports Community Trust, providing safe, secure, and accessible sporting facilities for the Moray community.
Tamara Jade Scott - Carer
Tamara Jade Scott is a carer with Homecare Scotland, providing home healthcare and support.
Gillian Pirie - Volunteer Development Officer
Gillian Pirie is a Volunteer Development Officer at Moray Food Plus, a service which provides emergency food provision alongside other projects in Moray.
Amanda Hedley - School Co-ordinator
Amanda Hedley is the DYW (Developing the Young Workforce) Moray School Co-ordinator for Elgin High School and Milnes High School.
Aimee Stephen - Business Liaison
Aimee Stephen is the DYW (Developing the Young Workforce) Moray Business Liaison. In Aimee's career story, she says "Not one day is the same in my role. All in one day I could be organising an event, liaising with employers, partners or educators regarding a project or meeting employers to support them with upskilling or recruiting young people into their business."
Louise Darnley - Graphic Designer
Louise Darnley studied to be a graphic designer at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design at the University of Dundee. Unlike her college mates she decided to move back home and pursue a very successful career in the creative and digital industry in the Highlands.
Jolene Young - School Co-Ordinator
Jolene is the DYW School Co-Ordinator for Speyside High School and Lossiemouth High School.
Jason Hysert - Water Bailiff
Jason is a Water Bailiff with the Spey Fishery Board. Find out about his career pathway from Electrical Engineer to Water Bailiff and his advice to young people considering this role.
A chat with Nigel Plaskitt, English actor, puppeteer, producer, and both stage and television director.
Nigel Plaskitt is an English actor, puppeteer, producer, and both stage and television director.
David Rumbles - Head Greenkeeper
Find out more about David's career path to his current position of Head Greenkeeper at Elgin Golf Club.
Instagram to Entrepreneur - Emma's Cakes and Cocktails
Find out about Emma Curran's career pathway to becoming an entrepreneur 'by accident'...
Dick and Dom, A British Comedy Double Act
Dick and Dom (originally Richard and Dominic) are a British comedy double act consisting of the presenters Richard "Dick" McCourt and Dominic "Dom" Wood.
Working with Animals at Moray Coast Vets
To be a farm vet you need to be a good team worker, able to get on with different types of people and find humour even in stressful situations! You also need to be prepared to work in cold, wet, dark and smelly conditions. It can be quite a physical job.
A New Career with NHS Grampian
Originally I moved away from Moray and lived in Aberdeen for about 8 years however I missed the local area and family so decided to move back as we have so many positive things on our doorstep including amazing scenery, a national park and generally lovely helpful people.
Jumping Through Numbers
I’m 45 and went through my full education in Elgin, New Elgin Primary and Elgin High School. On approaching 6th year, I was undecided about my future.
Calculating success in Accountancy
Scott Dunbar 34, who was born and raised in Elgin, Moray has had many professional achievements since going directly into employment in Moray after leaving school.
Driven by Adventure
Kirstin successfully applied for the HNC Health Care course at Moray College UHI to test her career preference to get into the Health and Social Care Sector and now works as Practice Education Facilitator at Dr Grays guiding new student nurses.
Climbing the Food Chain
Graeme Morrison turned a seasonal factory job at Baxters for the summer in 1996 into a global career with the company.
Breaking the Glass Ceiling
Diane Charlesworth, Director at Pinefield Glass, pushed through the ‘glass ceiling’ after joining the company at 17.