(Left to right) Yvonne Bayne, Curriculum Manager for Science at Fife College, Claire Cameron, Education & Training Manager (Department of Laboratory Medicine) at NHS Lothian, Sarah Smith, HCS Professional Lead at NHS Lothian and Lynne Taylor, Education & Training Manager (Department of Laboratory Medicine) at NHS Lothian are pictured at the 2019 Advancing Healthcare Awards at the Park Plaza Victoria in London.

Fife College, in partnership with NHS Lothian, has won a prestigious national award for an innovative approach to training the life science workforce of the future.

The partnership scooped the top award in the ‘Scottish Government Award for Driving Improvement, Delivering Results’ category at the 2019 Advancing Healthcare Awards in London. The award recognised the achievements of the School for Health, Science and Technology (SHST) which is enabling students to gain on-the-job experience while addressing current and future skills shortages in Scotland

The partnership is playing a significant role in apprentice recruitment, career progression, staff development and schools engagement. 

The School for Health, Science and Technology has quickly earned a reputation in the health sector for its successful delivery of bespoke flexible training programmes across a range of large national and local employers.

The innovative and inspiring programmes that the School offers reinforce its status as a centre of excellence and recognises Fife College and NHS Lothian as leaders in their field.

Picking up the award with partners from NHS Lothian, Yvonne Bayne, Curriculum Manger for Science at Fife College said: “We are delighted to have won this award which recognises the hard work that the partners have put in to make the School for Health, Science and Technology such a success.

“Working together over recent years has enabled us to offer excellent opportunities for students to progress - from STEM programmes for school pupils through to Modern Apprenticeships, degree transition programmes and an honours degree which the Partnership has developed in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh.

“The model of delivery has expanded beyond life sciences to design innovative training programmes across healthcare science, digital skills, facilities management and pharmacy.”

Sarah Smith, HCS Professional Lead at NHS Lothian was equally thrilled to win this prestigious national award and said: “We were delighted to be short listed for the Scottish Government's Award for Driving Improvement, Delivering Results but to then go on to win was wonderful recognition for everyone involved.

“We are lucky enough to have a successful partnership with Fife College who have listened and worked with us to develop and deliver a pathway for young people to start their healthcare science career whilst at school and to develop our existing staff to ensure we have a robust and sustainable workforce for the future.

This collaboration has gone from strength to strength and we are now using this model to develop other professional career pathways."

Hugh Hall, Principal of Fife College, said: “I would like to congratulate the School for winning this prestigious national award. The recognition is well and truly deserved and is testament to their forward thinking and inspired hard work.

“This is an exciting time for the School for Health, Science and Technology as it expands to include The University of Edinburgh to further develop the curriculum with the launch of a new unique part-time Biomedical Laboratory Science (Professional Practice) degree programme. I was delighted to see the first students enrolled onto the degree in September 2018.

“I am very proud that Fife College is part of this ground breaking initiative which, alongside reducing the skills gap in life sciences, is also enabling us to build a globally competitive science based industry in Scotland.”

Karen Harris, Deanery of Biomedical Sciences, University of Edinburgh, said: “We are delighted our partners have won this award and received recognition for their efforts in developing academic and career pathways for this and future generations of life scientists.”

More information about the School for Health, Science and Technology (SHST) can be found here.