Erin Curran from St Andrew’s RC Secondary School is our 2020 Standard Life Aberdeen Student of the Year for Glasgow. Here her School Coordinator David shares how the support of the Career Ready programme and mentor Blair gave her the skills, confidence and opportunity to kickstart a rewarding future.

When Erin initially made her application to join the Career Ready programme, she was a girl who lacked a lot of confidence and had a great deal of uncertainty about what she wanted to do after school. She didn’t speak to people she didn’t know and kept a pretty small friendship group.

Erin was delighted to be accepted onto the Career Ready, but very nervous. I remember her asking a hundred questions. What will my mentor be like? What if I don’t get on with them? How will I know how to get to their work? What bus will I take? At her first meeting with Blair at Celtic Park I wasn’t sure they would get on. They were quite literally “Chalk and Cheese”.

“When I first met Erin she came across as a polite but incredibly shy, unsure of herself and her future. At the beginning of our mentorship even something as relatively simple as getting public transport alone would give Erin concern. Over the course of the programme I’ve seen Erin grow as a person, becoming more determined and more confident in herself. The transformation was really quite noticeable during her internship at Leidos, something that a number of other staff members commented on. Erin has changed from that shy quiet girl I first met into a young lady now more sure of who she is and the possibilities the world has for her.” – Blair Fallis, Leidos

Over the course of the Career Ready programme Erin and Blair’s relationship has become something I could never have predicted. She really has become a different person to that quiet, shy girl who started on this journey. She is confident and has a clear idea of what she wants to do after leaving school.

“Before Career Ready I wasn’t sure what I was going to do when I left school. Meeting my mentor Blair has made a huge difference to me. Without his support, and that of all the people I worked with during my internship at Leidos, I would have no idea how much I enjoy web design and coding. This is an industry I will love having a career in and I am so happy to be applying for the Leidos Apprenticeship Programme. Blair has helped me find my career and I can’t thank him enough.” – Erin Curran

Erin is now looking to take up an Apprenticeship as a Coder, a career that up until her time working with Blair she would never have considered. Erin completely deserves to be Student of the year due to the resilience, dedication and growth she has shown. She is the embodiment of what we hope for in all our Career Ready young people.