Fulton MacGregor MSP has met the entrepreneurial students who set up a shop within New College Lanarkshire’s Coatbridge Campus.
The member of the Scottish Parliament for Coatbridge and Chryston visited The Wee Shop in F2 last week.
The shop, which sells a range of student essentials and sustainable products, was created by nine students of the Ready for Retail course, which is aimed at learners with additional support needs to help them develop independence and employability skills.
He was welcomed by our Principal and Chief Executive, Professor Christopher Moore, and spent time chatting with class lecturer Audrey Mackrell, and student Dean Anderson, who was nominated as the shop’s manager by his peers.
Mr MacGregor said: “I was delighted to attend The Wee Shop in F2 at Coatbridge Campus.
“It’s an amazing initiative by the students and it is clear from their enthusiasm for the project the impact it is having on their self-esteem and learning.
“I think their tag-line of ‘wee shop, big hearts’ says it all really.”
The Wee Shop in F2, located on the first floor of the Campus across from the student lounge, sells drinks, snacks, metal straws, stationery, reusable coffee cups, USB drives and mobile phone accessories.
David McShane, Head of Faculty of Supported Learning, said: “Our students were over the moon that they were able to welcome Fulton MacGregor MSP into The Wee Shop in F2, and were only too happy to sell him some of their merchandise.
“We greatly appreciate the time that Mr MacGregor was able to spend chatting with the students and staff members involved.
“It is down to our students’ initiative and commitment that this concept has grown from an idea into a dedicated shop space within the heart of the Coatbridge Campus.
“Such is the success of the project that there are already plans to involve another class group to increase the opening hours from two days per week to three.”
The idea for the shop arose last year when the students, then enrolled on a Skills for Life course, operated a stall selling student essentials as part of the regular Market Day events.
They came up with the idea of securing a more permanent space – and won £250 in funding through finishing in second place in the ‘What’s the Big Idea?!’ competition to encourage entrepreneurial skills in students.
Working with the Estates team at Coatbridge Campus, a storage room was cleared and converted into a space where students can now put their learning into practice.
The Wee Shop is supported by the John Mather Trust, Young Enterprise Scotland, Bridge2Business and the College’s Market Day initiative.
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