Martin Whitfield MSP has welcomed the first national Big College Open Week – aka #BigCOW – from 27 to 31 March when colleges across Scotland are opening their doors to showcase all they have to offer.

A host of exciting activities are taking place in colleges length and breadth of Scotland during the week. Organised by the College Development Network (CDN) Marketing and Communications Network, the purpose of the week is to demonstrate all that colleges offer – including the wide range of learning pathways and options open to students.

Choosing to study at college is the best way to start, change or develop a new career right on your doorstep. By coming together, Scotland’s colleges will show how they are the right choice for anyone – young and not so young – who wants to start or change their careers, and for businesses looking to develop their workforce.

During the week colleges will be offering taster sessions, tours, the chance to meet course tutors and members of Students’ Associations, who will be on hand to talk about clubs, societies and support. There are taster days and open evenings, and you can ‘learn to student like a pro’ with short talks on careers, the library and admissions.

Welcoming the week, Martin Whitfield MSP said:

“Scotland’s colleges provide vital opportunities for individuals to enhance their skills, qualifications and employability. They are also essential to employers and wider Scottish society to help develop the skilled workforce we need to drive economic development.

“I welcome this first Big College Open Week and encourage anyone who wants to find out more about what our colleges have to offer to take advantage of the range of events and activities and find out if college is for them.”

Jim Metcalfe, Chief Executive, CDN, said:

“We are really excited to be launching the very first Big College Open Week. It’s all part of the Choose College campaign and aims to highlight the incredible opportunities colleges offer. The week will showcase the support and expertise that has helped countless pupils, school leavers, career changers, career developers, employers, graduates and apprentices to take the next steps in their journey.

“We want to get the message out to parents, grandparents, guardians, teachers, mature students and school pupils that college is so much more than a course – it offers pathways, experiences and qualifications that lead to real careers and future success.”

Explore what is happening at your local college during the week at