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Interview with Graham Milne

Graham Milne shared memories of taking the College Rugby team to an international universities rugby tournament in Bilbao, Spain. He talks about the journey there by bus, feeling lost once they got there, beating the English team in the first round, and the feeling of coming third in the tournament. He also talks about how things have changed at the university since his time there, and the importance of taking advantage of the social aspects of university as well as the educational benefits.

0.00 Start of the interview
0.20 Didn’t initially want to do Civil Engineering. Wanted to do Architecture at Dundee University. Dad owned GMB. Failed first year of his degree and did a Higher National Diploma in Civil Engineering instead
1.10 Great honour to be picked by peers to be captain of the rugby team. Great responsibility too – need good attitude, discipline. Wouldn’t see himself as the best player, but had other skills – leadership for example.
4.20 He received a letter from Spain looking for teams to promote rugby in the Basque area of Spain through a tournament. The application he put forward was a little embellished. But to his surprise the team was selected. Initial doubts - didn’t know how they would get there – didn’t think they could do the country credit. Had to try to get funding to travel, but accommodation, food etc would be supplied by Bilbao University. Managed to get the funding but it was a very hard task – some of it came from the College, but most of it was raised externally. They took the Bus to England, cross English Channel, then to Spain via Stagecoach. Train to Arun [???] station. Left there on their own in the middle of nowhere not sure if there would be another train to get where they needed to go. Managed to then catch a train to Bilbao, but they had no-one able to speak Spanish and there was no-one to meet them there in Bilbao. They were afraid of armed police walking around the town due to threat of terrorism (Basque separatists). They felt lost, he “nearly had a mutiny” from the team (i.e. people threatening to go home and not take part). But someone managed to phone University of Bilbao and a bus was arranged to their accommodation.
9.20 First game against England (Salford Uni), and Scotland won. Their opponents had a more professional set up (coach, medics, better equipment etc), but were over-confident, and had gone out the night before, so they were not in good shape for the match. Dundee “took them apart”.
11.20 He feels his team had great camaraderie, team spirit. Great feeling to win Bronze medal. Only sadness is that some players that he had promised would get a game, decided after that first match that they were not good enough and opted out of playing, choosing instead to cheer from the sidelines. He regrets they didn’t get the experience of playing in the tournament.
13.20 He didn’t stay in college accommodation, but stayed at home in Dundee, and had the benefits of that. He managed to see the College’s accommodation, and, compared with what his children have experienced at university, thinks there is a big improvement in what is provided now.
15.10 College / Uni is all new for students, and next steps are work, then rising in your profession, for example, taking part in professional organisations (like the Chartered Institute of Civil Engineers). Planning is important – plan to get where you want to go, encourage others to join your profession. He is a STEM Ambassador (Bridges to Schools) – and has shown school pupils how to build suspension bridges, and conduct disaster recovery exercises. Make sure you contribute to your profession.
19.05 He remembers the whole experience was one of enjoyment. Take advantage of the social aspect as well as the educational one, so join a society or a club that will introduce you to your circle of friends for the next few years. This also applies when you get into the world of work or moving to a new area – it’s all new, and joining a club helps you get into that new environment.

Graham Milne

Interview with Christina Howie

Christina Howie speaks about her experience on the Nursing course at Dundee College of Technology, the close friendships she developed with fellow students, the social life (including the rugby match with the engineers), her subsequent career as a nurse, how things have changed, including improved attitudes towards nurses in light of Covid.

0.00 Interview starts
0.10 Why she wanted to be a nurse – came from a medical family (could train in local hospital or get a degree)
1.10 Why they had a computer course on the degree (story about the computer room)
1.50 She picked Dundee because it was the closest to home
3.05 Course was new and intense; theory from September to May and practical work in the summer (paid)
3.50 Story about the year she didn’t want to be a nurse anymore (skin test an vaccine) (potential scene for stop motion animation)
5.00 Lecturers as former nurses vs lecturers with teaching experience
6.20 Her most treasured memory – the friendships (the first 2 girls she met and stayed with are still her friends)
7.35 Abertay building a mix of old and new, doesn’t miss the building but the nice memories created
8.57 The building was new and modern for its time vs the old hospital she could have practiced at
10.52 After finishing the degree she got a job as a nurse straight away, worked at most of Dundee’s hospitals
11.50 Horrible things nurses are exposed to; each nurse has her own thing (sputum)
12.32 Civil engineering and the nursing having fancy parties together
13.17 Having rugby matches with the rugby team and going to their games
13.10 Society of nurses and charities the science department was involved in
14.05 Career choices then were banking, teaching or nursing; there are more choices now but she probably would have still chosen nursing (medical family)
16.16 Nurses always required, especially now with COVID, some robots used – telling patients to sit down
18.02 Shows pictures (with uniforms and class), badge

Christina Howie

Dundee Technical College and School of Art (formerly Dundee Technical Institute)

  • GB 3516 ABY-DTCSA
  • Fonds
  • c. 1870-1936

The collection consists of records relating to the administration and development of the Dundee Technical Institute, which later became the Dundee Technical College and School of Art.

The core of the collection is in the form of minutes of the main governing body (ABY-DTCSA-1) and committee of management (ABY-DTCSA-2), student enrolment registers recording academic achievements of students (ABY-DTCSA-3). These registers start at the end of 1902, and the gap in the student record before this is partially addressed by the prize lists that were published from 1892/3 onwards (ABY-DTCSA-7). These are amongst another core publicity record, syllabuses (prospectuses) advertising courses offered and describing their content (ABY-DTCSA-7).

A large part of the collection consists of correspondence relating to officials, such as the principal and treasurer (ABY-DTCSA-3-3, 4, 5, & 6). Amongst these are a number of letters from serving soldiers during the First World War giving accounts of what they are experiencing.

Other records dealing with development of the institution include the published Principal’s Reports starting in 1913/14 (ABY-DTCSA-6) and top level financial accounts (abstracts) within the financial records (ABY-DTCSA-4). Estates records also provide a detailed record of the project to construct a new building in Bell Street at the beginning of the twentieth century, including building plans (ABY-DTCSA-5).

Dundee Technical Institute

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