WEE COUNTY students are looking ahead to a range of new careers and possibilities as they picked up their hard-earned scrolls this month.

Hundreds of people from across the whole Forth Valley area graduated from Forth Valley College with two separate events: Falkirk Town Hall on October 1 and Stirling Castle on October 3.

Among them were Sarah Louise Philip from Tillicoultry and Victoria McLaren from Sauchie both graduated with a HND Childhood Practice, which they studied for at the Alloa Campus.

Sarah, 29, who now works in the Bright Beginners Nursery in Stirling, said: "I am absolutely delighted and proud to have graduated as I loved the course. I would recommend it to anyone."

Victoria, 28, who now works in the Wellgreen Nursery in Stirling, added: "The course was very enjoyable and I loved it too.

"The lecturers were fantastic and I would recommend the course, especially as there will be a lot of jobs opening up in this industry in 2020."

More than 1000 students were eligible to graduate this year from Forth Valley College and 325 of them chose to collect their scrolls – 130 at Stirling Castle and 195 at Falkirk.

Hector MacAulay, managing director of Balfour Beatty, gave the keynote speech at Falkirk Town Hall, while guest speaker at the Stirling Castle event was Gillian Docherty, chief executive officer of the Data Lab.

The Alloa Bowmar Pipe Band were on hand to lead in the top table and guests of honour at both ceremonies.

A number of prizewinners were honoured at the two events, with some added recognition for others.

The former Head Teacher of Bo'ness Academy Steve Dougan, who was instrumental in starting the highly innovative and successful SCOTS programme at FVC, and Bobby Gill, who has been a Forth Valley College Board Member for the last eight years, were bestowed with the honour of Fellow of Forth Valley College at the Stirling Castle ceremony.

Forth Valley College Principal Dr Ken Thomson said: "We were delighted to host two excellent graduation ceremonies last week. Everyone at Forth Valley College would like to congratulate this year's graduates and wish them well for the future.

"A big well done to the prizewinners as they embark upon their new careers or continued study. They have all worked extremely hard to pass their qualifications and should rightly be very proud of their efforts.

"They have without a doubt been a credit to themselves and to the college. We are sure they will go on to have successful careers on whatever they choose to do."