A former baker has hung up her oven gloves to embark on her dream of becoming a counsellor after her soldier dad inspired her to help PTSD sufferers.
Carol-Ann Cowie, 50, graduated with a Masters in Psychology from Aberdeen University yesterday to move a step closer to her ambition.
She is now enrolled on a two-year post-graduate diploma in counselling and could go on to do a further year of study in psychotherapy.
Mrs Cowie, from Milltimber, Aberdeen, has grown up surrounded by the military and was constantly on the move as a youngster. Her father George Scott, who was proudly watching on at her graduation ceremony, served as a staff sergeant in the Royal Corps of Transport and was deployed to Northern Ireland during the Troubles.
Before Mrs Cowie and her husband Mike had their daughters Alexandra, 16, and Imogen, 12, she completed an undergraduate degree in psychology.
She ended up running her own bakery, Bluebell Bakes, which produced made-to-order cakes from small orders to full wedding cakes, so she could remain at home to support her family.
But she said: “I always had ambitions to make something of my psychology degree and now the girls are a bit older it’s time to do something for me.”
With increasing numbers of servicemen and women suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, it became an area which Mrs Cowie became fascinated by.
She added: “It’s one of my main areas of interest. I grew up around the forces. The amount of people suffering from PTSD always seems to be increasing.”