Learner of the Year Award
The Scottish Union Learning Board introduced the Scottish Union Learning Learner of the Year Award in 2011, with the aim of recognising the range of learning journeys currently undertaken by learners in the workplace, supported by trade unions. The Learner of the Year Award 2023 was sponsored by The Open University in Scotland and presented at STUC Congress.
The recipient of the 2023 Learner of the Year Award was Fadzai Mwakutuya, a member of the Scottish Artists Union (SAU).
Artist and union activist, Fadzai Mwakutuya, received the Scottish Union Learning Learner of the Year Award at the STUC Annual Congress in Dundee. The award recognised Fadzai’s achievements in undertaking SAU learning courses, as well as her integral role in co-founding the SAU’s Intersectional Subgroup. Fadzai has represented the SAU on STUC business, such as attending the Black Workers’ Conference, and the Women’s Weekend School. The award was presented by First Minister Humza Yousaf. This year the award was sponsored by The Open University in Scotland.
The recipient of the 2022 Learner of the Year Award was Joan Tasker, a member of Unite the Union.
The Scottish Trades Union Congress, which held its annual Congress in Aberdeen, awarded Joan with Learner of the year, recognising her achievements in union learning within the past year. SAMH worker Joan, who documented her struggle with dyslexia, has completed over 50 online learning courses through Unite the Union’s union learning programme. The award was presented by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
The recipient of the 2020 Learner of the Year Award was Barry Young, a member of Unite the Union.
Barry, who works in Kilmarnock as a painter in Housing Asset Services for East Ayrshire Council, received the 10th Annual Learner of the Year Award from the STUC at the Scottish Union Learning Everyday Skills Conference, which took place online on 25 February 2021. The Award was presented by Wendy Burton, Director of Scottish Union Learning.
Barry was chosen as 2020 Learner of the Year for his commitment both as a learner and as an advocate for suicide prevention and mental health awareness. His learning journey began when he was elected as a workplace ULR, and subsequently Shop Steward and Health & Safety rep.
The recipient of the 2019 Learner of the Year Award was Jena Hunter, a member of the BECTU Sector of Prospect.
Jena was chosen as 2019 Learner of the Year because of her commitment to her continuing learning journey through union learning. To expand her skillset and grow her professional experience, Jena has undertaken a range of BECTU Vision short training courses, including Scottish Mental Health First Aid and the accredited Managing Safety in Film and Television Productions.
Isabella Sutherland, a member of Unite the Union who works in Aberdeen as a Heli-pad administrator for Aramark in the offshore catering sector, received the 8th Annual Learner of the Year Award from the STUC at the 11th Annual Scottish Union Learning Conference in Clydebank, Glasgow on Tuesday, 13 November 2018. The Award was presented by Ivan McKee MSP, Minister for Trade, Investment and Innovation.
Isabella was chosen as 2018 Learner of the Year because of her commitment both as a learner and as an advocate for adults returning to learning in the workplace.
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OpenLearn: Revisiting Red Clydeside In January 2019 Glasgow Trades Council joined with Open University to mark the centenary of the Red Clydeside at an event in George Square, Glasgow.
The Open University - Union Learning The OU in Scotland and the Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC) signed an updated Memorandum of Understanding on 19 April 2021, setting out a range of collaborative activity which will open up training opportunities for the 540,000 Scottish workers who are trade unionists, the members of 39 affiliated trade unions and 20 Trades Union Councils.