Learner of the Year Award

Learner of the Year Award 2018

Isabella Sutherland, 2018 Learner of the Year. Photo by Fraser Band.

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.

Isabella found education at school to be challenging due to large class sizes and the subsequent lack of a supportive environment in which to learn. She was aware that returning to learning was necessary in order to maintain and build her skills base to support her development at work. The support provided by Unite the Union’s ‘Learn with Unite’ project ensured a high-quality learning experience and inspired Isabella to make use of the learning opportunities which were made available.

Isabella currently works for Aramark in Aberdeen as a Heli-pad administrator, in the offshore catering sector. Through Unite, she has undertaken learning opportunities on Mental Health Awareness, Understanding Equalities, ECDL, Writing and Presenting Motions and Automation. This has had a positive impact on her working life, improving her confidence and abilities in her workplace, and also in her personal life.

Juggling work and family commitments was challenging for Isabella, but with support from her family, and union colleagues, she has persevered and already has plans for further learning through the union’s Leadership course.

Having participated in a range of training opportunities, Isabella was keen to ensure that her colleagues were fully aware of the learning opportunities on offer through the union. She has therefore, become a Unite ULR and is keen to encourage her colleagues to participate in learning in order to increase their knowledge and skills.