Three students have been awarded a total of £5,000 in funding towards further and higher education as part of a new national bursary scheme from Chivas Brothers, the Scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard.

Launched earlier this year, the Chivas Brothers Bursary has been developed to encourage further study and training amongst the company’s 1,600 employees in Scotland and England, as well as their families. The successful recipients of the 2016 bursary are Laura Caban, an aspiring actor from Glasgow, Adam Donnelly, an aircraft engineering student from Paisley, and Mia Forbes, a classicist from Surrey.

Laura, whose grandfather works in engineering at Chivas Brothers’ Strathclyde distillery, has been awarded £2,000 towards a two-year BA Acting for Stage & Screen course in Edinburgh – delivered jointly by Edinburgh Napier and Queen Margaret universities. Adam, whose mother is a payroll analyst for Chivas Brothers in Paisley, has received a £1,000 grant to help cover the costs of studying Aircraft Engineering at Ayrshire College. Mia, whose father works in Chivas Brothers’ Hammersmith office, will be putting her £2,000 of funding towards the cost of an undergraduate degree in Classics at the University of Cambridge.

Anthony Schofield, Public Affairs Director at Chivas Brothers, says: “On behalf of everyone here at Chivas Brothers, I’d like to congratulate Laura, Adam and Mia on their bursary success. The standard of entries for the scheme’s opening year have set the bar incredibly high, which has served to make the final recipients’ achievement even more impressive. All three showed real drive and passion for their subjects in their applications, and we couldn’t be more proud to be supporting them as they take the next step in their studies.”

Introduced for the first time this year, the Chivas Brothers Bursary has been developed in partnership with the Scottish International Education Trust (SIET). The SIET was set up in 1971 to help talented men and women fulfil their personal and professional goals by providing them with grants to complete further study. The launch of the new bursary scheme makes it easier for employees and their families to apply for support from the SIET, with up to £5,000 a year on offer over the next three years.

The scheme’s introduction follows a £100,000 donation by Chivas Brothers to the SIET last year, and complements an ongoing employee development programme that has seen the company invest in professional training for its staff. Quality Analyst Stephen O’Neill, for example, has been able to take the next step in his career by studying for a Level 2 course in Packaging Technology, supported by the Chivas Brothers Employee Development team.

Anthony Schofield continues: “After seeing such compelling results with our internal staff development programme, we launched the Chivas Brothers Bursary to further engage and inspire our people, and to give back to the communities where we work. For us, this means continuing to foster a culture of empowerment, encouraging employees and their families to realise their ambitions and reach their full potential. We hope the bursary goes some way to doing just that for this year’s three recipients, and that it will continue to do so for the next two years of the scheme – and beyond.”

Chivas Brothers counts some of the world’s leading whisky and gin brands as part of its portfolio – including Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute and Beefeater gin. It has opened the new bursary scheme to employees at all of its 32 sites, which span Orkney, Speyside, Central Scotland, Ayrshire, London and Plymouth.

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