Name: Johanna Urquhart, Principal
Company: Lomond School, Helensburgh
Tel: 01436 672476
“Our location means that there is a particular emphasis on outdoor pursuits. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is, without doubt, a significant feature and we have enjoyed great success carrying out expeditions both locally and abroad. We were very proud and delighted to see so many of our young people achieve the Gold Award this year and for the school to be recognised in such a special way for its participation over many years.”
Johanna Urquhart, Principal
Lomond School Goes for Gold
At Lomond School we pride ourselves on our commitment to the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards and as a school we encourage our pupils to take part. The Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a mark of real achievement and commitment by the many young people who participate and is highly regarded by Universities and Employers.
Lomond School is proportionately one of the top performing independent school in Scotland for Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards. On the 7th July of this year, this commitment was recognised and rewarded at a ceremony at Holyrood Palace. A number of pupils along with parents and staff attended the awards ceremony to receive their Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards presented by DofE Trustee HRH, The Earl of Wessex. Johanna Urquhart, Principal at Lomond School, received Lomond’s Licence Certificate in recognition of the school’s participation and support with the Awards over many years. A special event was also organised at Buckingham Palace to mark the diamond anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards.
The DofE is the world’s leading youth achievement awards. It has major challenges at three progressive Award levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold). Pupils can enter the Duke of Edinburgh Awards from S3 (Bronze) and then go on to do their Silver (S4) and Gold in S5/S6. The Award is a balanced programme of activities that aims to develop the mind, body and soul of young people encouraging social interaction and team working skills. Lomond School believes passionately that education should be about supporting pupils to develop and grow both academically and personally as rounded individual with strong values. We believe the Awards help to support this aim. The DofE broadens horizons, skills and friendships, it is a fun and rewarding journey where pupils grow in confidence and become more independent, Achieving a DofE Award opens doors to education and employment opportunities for any young person.
Former pupil, Jasmine Greig, has recently left school to go to University, she comments on her Duke of Edinburgh experience.
“I became involved with the DofE programme when I was 13 and in Third Year at school. I really liked the sound of the Bronze Award activities, as I love being outdoors doing interesting things. At that stage I enjoyed the expeditions, even though our Practice One ended very early, after being snowed off the hills. I remember clearly waiting to be collected, frozen solid, wet and miserable, vowing that I would never set foot outside again and DofE was not for me. That lasted until after a hot shower and a cup of tea, after which I was ready to go again. To my mind, the best things about the programme are having the opportunity to work with others in all sorts of adverse conditions and in learning new skills. In achieving my awards, I was able to learn reptile keeping, setting up and maintaining an aquarium, learning the cello, playing hockey, rock climbing, canoeing and my favourite of all – scuba diving. With the exception of playing the cello I still do all these activities. Volunteering was also fun. I worked a lot with younger children through a local Beaver Group, and helping with after school care and at the Badminton Club. I also helped out at a local vet practice. I feel after completing all 3 stages of the DofE, as well as the Diamond Challenge, I have improved my skills of team work, and have much greater resilience. I loved how close I got with everyone as well as the top quality banter that we had out on the hills. I got to know and like people that previously I had not been friends with and it certainly has helped develop me as a person.”