Eilidh is named Gaelic college’s Student of the Year

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A young woman from Tiree has been named as Student of the Year at Gaelic college Sabhal Mòr Ostaig (SMO) UHI.

Eilidh MacFadyen is studying for her BA (Hons) Gaelic and Traditional Music, is undergraduate Student of the Year at they Skye college.

The 20-year-old, has been a student at SMO for three years, where she is an exemplary ambassador for both the college and her course.

She is an extremely talented musician and since enrolling at the college, has won silver and gold medals at the Royal National Mods in the under 19 accordion competitions.

For a number of years now, she has also been a tutor at Fèis Thiriodh, passing on her musical knowledge and experience to a younger generation.

The enthusiastic student was very much involved in the events programme for the 40th anniversary of the college last year and acted as pipe major for the SMO pipe band when they played at the Foundation Day.

She organises sporting events for other students and even helps as a volunteer at Fàs Mòr, the childcare facility based at the college, at lunchtime or after classes, where she is adored by the children.

John N MacLeod, Director of Studies, said: “Eilidh is particularly deserving of this award, given in recognition of her outstanding personal and academic achievements but also her sterling and unselfish work on behalf of the Sabhal Mòr Ostaig student community. She is a great ambassador for the College, UHI and her local community.”

She is a very active member of the SMO Student Association and works tirelessly in organising social activities and events within SMO and further afield.

Dr Decker Forrest, BA (Hons) Gaelic and Traditional Music course leader, said: “Eilidh’s dedication to learning and helping others is exemplary and, of course, her talent and enthusiasm for music has brought much pride to her university and home-community in Tiree. Eilidh, who was brought up on a large, busy croft, has displayed an outstanding work-ethic which she applies to anything and everything she sets her mind to. I doubt I have ever taught a more deserving recipient of this award than her.”

Miss MacFadyen said: “I am delighted. I wasn’t expecting it at all and it makes me very proud indeed to think that SMO staff thought me worthy of it. My time so far at SMO has been absolutely fantastic and I’m looking forward to another year.”