Perth UHI graduate finds the pathway to a medical career

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Kevin Duncan


Kevin Duncan has now progressed to St Andrews University and is students' president


One young Perth College UHI graduate isn’t just fulfilling his dream of becoming a doctor, he’s also been elected President of the Medical Students Society at St Andrews University by his peers.

Formerly a student on the College’s Pathway to Medicine course, Kevin Duncan is now on the BSc Hons Medical Sciences at St Andrews University and will be President of the prestigious Bute Medical Society for twelve months.

After working in music retail for some years, Kevin decided that he wanted to get into medicine. However, he didn’t have the right academic qualifications, so he was advised to come to Perth College UHI as a first step.

He enrolled in evening classes to do Highers in Chemistry and Human Biology, which gave him a head start on the College’s Pathway to Medicine course.

This intensive, one-year programme has built up an impressive record in recent years of taking mature students with no university background and giving them the skills and knowledge they need to embark on a medical career

And after proving themselves with marks of 70% and above in their exams, up to five people a year can progress to the St Andrews University School of Medicine.

Kevin is delighted with the grounding he got at Perth College UHI, and believes firmly that he wouldn’t be achieving his dream if it weren’t for the Pathway to Medicine course. He explained, "Coming to College really has meant everything to me, as it would’ve been really difficult to get into uni otherwise".

"Lecturers at Perth were great, and really prepared me to go to St Andrews University to study medicine. Chemistry was the most challenging module of the pathway course, but the knowledge and experience I gained at College helped me stay on top of my work at uni."

"Subjects on the Pathway to Medicine course are linked in to first year at St Andrews, so that made studying a lot easier too."

"You have to put a lot into the course but if you apply yourself you can get through it."

Kevin has now finished his 2nd year and was voted in as President of the Bute Medical Society standing against three other candidates. Throughout the academic year the society organises guest speakers, charity events, freshers’ parties and takes part in formal university events.

Perth College UHI is increasingly being seen as a centre of excellence for medical and care courses, as it runs access courses for adults like Kevin, and is now involved in doing advanced research by PhD students with NHS Tayside.

The Pathway to Medicine course is unique to Perth College UHI and is designed to help students become NHS doctors in Scotland under a programme formally endorsed by the University of St Andrews’ Bute Medical School of Medicine.

To find out more about the Pathways to Medicine course, call the course tutor, Dr Robert Boyd, on 01738 877379.