Scott Graham, BSc Property Management and Valuation

I’m graduating with a First and the Jones Lang LaSalle Prize for Top Property Management and Valuation Honours Level Student – as well as a year’s experience in a job already under my belt.

I never expected to have already been working as a surveyor for a year by the time I was getting ready to graduate. I began working at Graham + Sibbald as part of a university placement programme in third year and was delighted to be asked to join the team permanently.

The programme is compressed in fourth year to allow those who, like me, are kept on to juggle their studies and work. It is challenging at times to manage both, especially as I study in Glasgow but work and live in Edinburgh. Work has been very encouraging, even allowing me to get on with course work in quiet times.

GCU’s emphasis on quality placements was the number one factor for me in choosing where to study. You need two years’ professional experience before qualifying in this industry, so it speeds up that lengthy process. It’s just one of the ways the programme is incredibly industry focused. It’s RICS accredited and has regular guest speakers from the field sharing their wealth of experience and expertise, too. As you are so immersed in the industry, you get known in your field and build up contacts.

I had dabbled in university straight out of school, studying business, but it was not for me. Then I worked for a number of years in a field that I just couldn’t see a future career path in and was looking for a change. My dad is a surveyor and suggested that I give that some thought.  So, I travelled to China to teach and when I got back I applied to university.

I really enjoy it. It’s not the kind of course that everyone would perhaps think they’d enjoy as it leads to a field that may be considered the uncool side of surveying – but it covers such a wide area there will be something to suit everyone. I’d definitely recommend it.