Student support


Our Student Services team is here to help you and offer advice and guidance on a wide range of matters which might affect you at college, such as: funding; study support; career coaching; finding accommodation; library resources etc.

If you have a disability or learning difficulty of any kind, you may find learning is more of a challenge and you may require additional support.  At West Highland College UHI, we recognise these challenges are individual to you; therefore we try to ensure that the support given is designed to suit you. The Extended Learning Support team are here to provide additional support, assistive technology and/or assistive materials as well as confidential guidance.

If you think you are affected by any of the following, then support is available:

  • Specific learning difficulties
  • Attention deficit disorder (ADD)
  • Sensory or hearing  impairment
  • Mental health issues

We are also available to assist Higher Education students who qualify for the Disabled Student’s Allowance (DSA) with the completion of their application form and we can advise them on supportive technology.


Please see our fees & funding page for more information on student finance.

Support for care leavers

At West Highland College UHI we would like to encourage more college and university applications from care leavers and anyone who has previously been cared for by a local authority - this could be in residential care, in foster care, cared for by friends or relatives, or cared for at home. We are committed to supporting you if you have a background in care.

Applying to College or University

We will try to make sure you have the information you need to get into college or university through any one of our ten centres. You can contact our Admissions Team with any questions you have. You can do this as early as S2 when you are choosing your subjects right up until you register at the College or University

If you would like to visit West Highland College UHI, we have regular open days or you can contact the Admissions Team to organise an individual campus tour.  You might like to start by ordering a Prospectus to have a browse at our courses.

When you apply for a place at college/university you will be asked to indicate if you have been in care on your UCAS form. Doing this allows us to take into consideration that your education may have been disrupted and gives us the opportunity to offer additional support. We will then contact you to see what we can do to help. But in the meantime feel free to contact Chrissy Harris for advice anytime.

You may find the UCAS Guide for Care Leavers video Care Leavers | Applying To University | UCAS useful or visit the UCAS website for further information.

Student Life

Once you have accepted a place to study at West Highland College UHI we have a range of support services here to help you.   WHC UHI is proud of its reputation for being friendly and helpful, but your first year at college/university can still feel a bit daunting, so we have lots of support available to students.  This includes study support and personal support.

We will match you with a mentor to support you during your time at college/university.  This will be a member of staff who you will meet with regularly to chat about life at college/university and to make sure that you have all the information you need.  Our Student Liaison Officer will also keep in touch with you during your studies to ensure you make the most of your student experience.

When you complete your degree course, we will financially assist you with the associated cost of graduation.

Contact Lesley Hawkins or telephone 01397 874313, who will be happy to discuss your student support arrangements at any time during your studies.


We understand that accommodation requirements are often particularly important for students leaving care.  At WHC UHI we can provide 365 day a year accommodation if required. Our Student Support Guidance Officer will be happy to discuss your accommodation needs and offer any advice or support required in this area - Telephone 01397 874380.

If you are domiciled in Scotland and studying at university level you may be entitled to a care leavers grant through SAAS.  If you would like to discuss your financial support arrangements to ensure you receive the support you are entitled to please contact our Student Finance Team on 01397 874321.

Contact the Student Services Team for more information

Who we are

We are very different from many other colleges with no single, central campus and you will therefore be studying at one of our ten college centres. Wherever you are studying, Student Services are on hand to help.

Our Student Services Team has developed an expertise in helping students and offering advice and guidance on a wide range of matters which might affect them at College, such as funding, study support, careers coaching etc.  If in doubt, please ask one of the team :

Chrissy Harris: Guidance Officer
Fort William 01397 874380

Ann Gillies: Bursary and Learning Support Officer
Fort William 01397 874040

Yasmin Yildiz: Recruitment, Information & Guidance and Admissions Officer
Fort William 01397 874235

Louise Penny: Library and Student Support Officer for Higher Education Hosted Students.
Fort William, 01397 874277

Christine Blyth: Extended Learning Support Co-Ordinator
Fort William 01397 874247

Val Matheson: Extended Learning Support Co-ordinator
Skye and Lochalsh 01397 874573

Lesley Hellon: Student Liaison Officer
Portree 01397 874503

Lorne Steven: Recruitment, Information & Guidance and Admissions Officer
Fort William 01397 874 246

Lorna MacPherson: Student Services Administrator, Funding and Admissions
Fort William

Robert MacLeod: Learning Resource Centre and Administrative Assistant
Fort William 01397 874277

Anne Maree Dykes: Student and Customer Services Manager
Fort William 01397 874 264

Lesley Hawkins: Head of Student Support
Fort William 01397 874 313



If you are studying at other college centres support and advice is available from local college staff.


How do I complain?

You can complain in person by phone, in writing or by email via our complaints form.

It is easier for us to resolve complaints if you make them quickly and directly to the service concerned.  So please talk to a member of our staff within the department you are complaining about.  Then they can try to resolve any problems on the spot.

Further Information

For more information on our complaints process, please see the following documents:

Complaints Handling Procedure

WHC UHI Complaints Procedure - Guide for Students

FAQ's Complaints

WHC UHI Complaints Form

Mitigating Circumstances

It is recognised that there may be times when a student’s circumstances are such that they cannot complete assessments to the best of their ability, or are unable to attend an examination, or are unable to meet an assessment deadline due to adverse circumstances beyond their control. As a result, students can request that these circumstances are taken into consideration by the College.

The claim and supporting evidence will be treated confidentially. If it is necessary to disclose any information to another party, other than those mentioned in the principles below, this will be done with the student’s permission.

Further Information

For more information on Mitigating Circumstances please see the following documents