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Partnership & Engagement: Arkwright at Watson’s

  • Senior School

George Watson’s College has been involved with the Arkwright Engineering Scholarship scheme for nearly thirty years.

Over the last few years we have sponsored Arkwright Scholars from other local schools, funding up to ten scholars at any one time. We also support our own pupils in their Arkwright Scholarship journey. 

Engineering has always been an important part of the educational mix at Watson’s but we also know that it is a vital part of the economic mix in this part of the world. The Arkwright Scholarships recognise the talent and commitment of young people from a wide range of backgrounds, helping to develop that talent in exciting and innovative ways.

Our sponsorship of the Arkwright Scholarships is part of our strategy of partnership and engagement with communities and schools in the City of Edinburgh and further afield. It enables young people to benefit from the facilities we have here at Watson’s. As a school, we benefit hugely from the insight and creativity that the scholars bring when they work with us. 

Engineering is a discipline that rewards co-operation and the sharing of good ideas. The Arkwright Scholarships see this concept come to life for both our students and the Arkwright Scholars with whom we work.

One of our own success stories this year is Gregor (S5). The Arkwright Scholarship gave him an opportunity to focus on the possibilities and opportunities within engineering, engaging in a ‘super curriculum’ approach. Gregor told us what the scholarship means to him:

Current Arkwright Scholar, Gregor (S5)

“Arkwright is a brilliant scheme for me because I enjoy engineering - I like to know how and why things work and what makes things tick. I like making or modifying something that fits the situation's needs better than any pre-made solution could offer. That’s one reason my proudest achievement so far is being part of a Greenpower team [pictured above] that won the Institute of Engineering and Technology’s ‘Best Engineering Award for a Race’. There's something incredible about working on such a large project but with the smallest parts mattering the most in the final solution. It’s also amazing that the team I am part of is still continuing on a project that was initially started over 10 years ago - people come and go but the core focus remains strong.”

Gregor has no hesitation that engineering is his career path of choice, and thanks Arkwright for allowing him to pursue his aspirations:

“In the future, I hope to be fully immersed in the engineering sector - perhaps working a job in the software engineering industry (in a programming role) or in the electrical engineering field. Those are my current areas of interest and the two I am particularly passionate about following further.”

As Gregor considers his education beyond Watson’s, our Head of Design, Technology and Engineering, Mr Graham explains the importance of bringing together engineering pupils from various schools across the city:

Mr Graham with previous Arkwright Scholars, sponsored by George Watson's College.

Mr Graham with previous Arkwright Scholars, sponsored by George Watson's College.

“We enjoy supporting and helping the students we sponsor on their journey into engineering and have been really impressed by the calibre of the Arkwright students that we support. At Watson’s, we find it a powerful and enriching experience to bring together the Arkwright Scholars we sponsor from local schools with our own engineering students. It has allowed us to run our own Engineering Connect days, and also invite in Former Pupils who gained Arkwright Scholarships. During these days we have been able to set complex engineering challenges, invite local Engineers in to talk to the students, and start a networking process within the groups of students themselves. This is part of an important process in leading pupils towards a preparation for the real world after school.”

The Arkwright Scholarship is an important part of life at George Watson’s College. It brings together a community of young people across the city with a common interest and ambition, offering a springboard for an exciting future in the industry. 

  • Arkwright Scholarship