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The following case studies
give insight into the SUCCEEDS placement experience
with the Communication Team at the Bank of Scotland involved
designing and producing a staff magazine.
My name is Julia
and I have mild celebral palsy which mainly affects my fine
motor co-ordination. Through being handicapped, I feel my
memory skills are very good as my brain is like a formula
one racing car my hands are like a Lada chogging away on the
motorway. I am patient and determined because activities can
take me longer and I believe in fighting for what you want.
I feel I understand people better and I am less judgmental
of things because I know what damage can be done when people
judge before they know the whole truth.
I was on a month
placement with the Communication Team in the Support Services
Division of the Bank of Scotland during August 1999. Having
just graduated in publishing, my placement was to design and
produce a new staff magazine for the Division. I took my knowledge
from my course and came out as a stronger person.
an office environment presented me with the opportunity to
use skills I had learnt at university, boosted my confidence
and developed my communication skills.
Although I had
studied publishing at Napier University for four years, the
placement enhanced my knowledge and experience in desk top
publishing. I was using PageMaker to design the magazine and
I was having to think of the whole publishing process rather
than just one part, which was often the case at university.
In addition, working in a real-life environment places a different
angle on how you prioritise your work and the number of tasks
you are asked to do because you are working within a busy
and changeable workplace.
and communication skills were boosted immensely. I was working
with managers but I always found them willing to listen to
my opinions, breaking down the idea that people see the handicap
before the person. I found myself being asked to show my skills,
as I was going in as an expert in publishing therefore I was
spent time with the people I worked with training them in
the packages and explaining why I was doing things in a certain
way. I was also taking part in the everyday life of the office
and I felt part of what was going on, not just the placement
Overall the placement
has made a difference because it has eliminated some of the
fears I had about going into a workplace where I was the stranger
and handicapped. It does make you realised that working in
an office does not have to be a major problem for either the
employee or the employer as long as you approach the situation
with honesty and belief in yourself.
Eileen completed a
placement with the curator at Dundee University's Museum and
The idea of returning
to work after many years of absence can be quite daunting.
So when the opportunity arose through the new SUCCEEDS scheme,
the feelings were tinged with a mixture of excitement and
These were soon
allayed by Ruth Neave, the curator of the Museum and Textile
department at University of Dundee, whose guidance and reassuring
words I was soon to be experiencing. We agreed to a five week
summer placement on a part-time, voluntary basis. The arrangement
was flexible involving two full days per week.
My first task:
or practice piece, was a 5ftx4ft multi coloured, tapisserie
wall hanging which required lightly vacuuming. I progressed
to 'The embroidery Collection' originating from schools of
needlework all over Europe and dating from 1900-1954. My main
aim was to meticulously follow instructions from a textile
manual, with ongoing supervision from Ruth. This involved
lightly vacuuming, gently swabbing with cotton buds or recording
any damaged surfaces. Each item required labelling with unbleached
cotton tape, and special marking pens were tested for their
indelibility. Once the collection was numbered and labels
sewn in place, each article required careful packing and locating.
There was a smaller
contemporary embroidery collection which required entering
into the Collections Day Book. Similar criteria was used but
each item needed measuring and describing. The use of gloves
was essential due to the delicate and fragile condition of
many of the fabrics, and care and attention necessary at all
times to respect the artists time consuming work.
The last day of
placement involved cataloguing paintings which were in storage
at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art. Whilst I was
not involved personally in retrieving the paintings, many
of which were large and heavy, the task did involve listing
the paintings for treatment and preservation, and detaining
those for further inquiry which were of interest and value.
and printing on material relied on life-long skills, whereas
the ability to follow a specialist's instructions was monitored
closely and regularly by the curator. The opportunity to return
to work was exciting and rewarding, insofar as, this type
of employment was completely new to me. The task, therefore,
was a challenge which proved not only enjoyable but brought
its own satisfaction, instilling confidence to return again
next year and build on this experience.
Christopher, who is
currently studying an Msc in Multimedia Technology at Napier
University School of Computing had the following experience:
This summer I
was placed with the Scottish Sports Association as part of
the SUCCEEDS project. I was primarily placed with the association
because of my marketing knowledge. The Scottish Sports Association
is the governing body for all sports associations in Scotland
including Scottish Football Association.
During my placement
at the SSA my duties varied from administrative to actually
helping them improve the appearance of their annual report
to designing a promotional leaflet informing people of what
the organisation does. I also helped them improve their WEB
I enjoyed working
with the organisation and would recommend that it is part
of SUCCEEDS next year. SUCCEEDS helped me greatly.
was not a problem, but sitting at the computer for periods
of time was. At first the SSA did not understand this, but
after explaining my disability, they had to.