30 November 2021

Jennifer Mullins, MSc Human Resource Management, shares her experience participating in the Edinburgh Award and why others should consider signing up for the Award.
Students working together at a desk

The Edinburgh Award is an excellent programme to get involved in during your time at the University of Edinburgh. If you are looking for a chance to develop skills that will benefit you throughout your career, the Edinburgh Award is the perfect opportunity to do so.

The Edinburgh Award recognises your commitment to your personal development and motivates you to become a well-rounded professional prior to graduation and beginning your career. It is highlighted on your higher education certificate, making it a great tool to stand out amongst other graduates in your field.

Selecting your skills

You will have the opportunity to attend a skills session hosted by the Student Development Team at the beginning of Semester 1. In this session, you will be introduced to the Edinburgh Award and you will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have.

After this session, you will have the opportunity to consider three skills that you would like to develop during your time at the School. These skills range from communication and presentation skills, to analytical and critical thinking skills.

In my experience, the most rewarding aspect of the Edinburgh Award is having the opportunity to develop skills that I have always struggled with. After selecting your skills, you will then submit a reflective journal that highlights your chosen skills and your reason for choosing them, and voilà, you are an official candidate of the Edinburgh Award.


Another excellent aspect of the Edinburgh Award is the opportunity to participate in coaching. Candidates are assigned a personal coach, who support them to pursue their action plan to develop their skills. The coaching session is helpful for setting goals and targets, and helping candidates to imagine how achieving these skills can enrich their lives, motivating them to put their plan into action.

In my experience, I left my coaching session feeling inspired with a clear plan of how to achieve my goals. This personal coaching experience gives the candidate an excellent support system throughout this journey.

Alongside coaching, the buddy system is a great programme to get involved in. The buddy system working with other students to support each other and share experiences. Throughout the process of achieving the Edinburgh Award there is much care to ensure that candidates feel supported and encouraged which is an extremely special attribute of the award.

Benefits of the Award

Upon completion, you not only have an award on your higher education certificate, you emerge from the programme as a well-rounded candidate, more confident in your skills and ready to begin your career. This award gives you the chance to stand out from the crowd and highlights your dedication to your professional development to employers.

Alongside the career benefits, the Edinburgh Award gives you the chance to meet like-minded people who have the potential to become lifelong friends. In my opinion, there is no reason not to jump at the opportunity to get involved in the Edinburgh Award; you will not regret it.

Jennifer Mullins

Jennifer Mullins is studying MSc Human Resource Management

Chat with Jennifer about her experience at the Business School on Unibuddy.