Sporting students recognised

UHI and HISA have announced the winners of the 2023 Sporting Blues.

The prestigious awards highlight the outstanding sporting achievements of UHI students. They are presented to people who attain an exceptionally high standard of performance in their sport.

Laura Watt has been awarded a Full Blue, as well as the UHI Sportsperson of the Year title. Laura is studying soft tissue therapy at UHI Perth and won a gold medal for Scotland in the World Junior Curling Championships 2023 which took place in Germany. Earlier in the year, she also competed in the Winter World University Games at Lake Placid in New York state, representing Team GB and achieving fourth place. Late last year she won a silver medal in the World Junior B Championships for Scotland.

Speaking about her award, Laura said: "I'm really happy to receive the UHI Sportsperson of the Year award and to also achieve a sporting blue. The past academic year has been super busy for me and I've received lots of support from my lecturers to keep up with my studies which makes being the Sportsperson of the Year even more rewarding."

Lois Garland was awarded a Full Blue for her achievements in athletics. Lois studies at UHI Perth and won a gold medal both at the Scottish Student Athletics Indoor Championships and the Scottish Student Athletics Outdoor Championships for 200m. She was also recently selected for Scotland at a senior level for individual 200m and 4x100m relay.

A third Full Blue was awarded to David Rose who studies Automotive Engineering at UHI Perth. David won a gold medal in the hammer at the Scottish Student Athletics Outdoor Championships. He said: "I started throwing hammer seven years ago. My coach was very helpful in trying to get my technique better and he shared the knowledge that everyone has the potential to do great things, but it is those who go out there and train their hardest every week who have the best chance. Since then, I have made a goal to keep throwing better and hopefully get recognised one day for any achievement I get. Being recognised with a Sporting Blue from UHI for my achievements in athletics is quite surreal, I have always dreamed of moments like this. I feel proud to do the sport that I love alongside my studies, I'm proud of what I have accomplished in my athletics career in the past year and I'm looking forward to competing for UHI in the future."

Cerys Cairns, another UHI Perth student and recipient of a Full Blue, has been picked to play for the Scottish National Netball Squad, competing in South Africa. She also plays in the Sky Sports televised Netball Super League for Glasgow based Strathclyde Sirens.

To find out more about the Sporting Blues, visit