CityLab is of immense benefit to all who participate, regardless of their personal and academic background. I am currently studying an MSc in Public Health at RGU and decided to become involved as I was taken by the aim of improving the wellbeing of Aberdeen’s population.

Initially my focus was on the people of Aberdeen and what we could do to help them; I had little regard for the business side of the project. It quickly became apparent though that CityLab would need emphasis on multiple facets. Creativity and innovation would be important, as would an understanding of what the people of Aberdeen want; but also “a business head” – ideas had to be sustainable and cost-effective.

In the last cohort, I was teamed with a group of students from diverse academic backgrounds, with a wide range of skills. Some of us were logical; others artistic and imaginative. I discovered skills I never knew I had! I’ve always felt my strengths lie in leading, managing and decision-making, while innovation and creativity were lacking. However, the project really brought out and enhanced my creative side; I’m proud to say that the idea our team used, which was ultimately chosen as the winning project, was one of mine! Something I would never have envisaged a few months ago.

The guidance and support provided by the supervisors was incredible. At each session they informally assess each group’s progress and offer real constructive feedback, which certainly proved essential for my team’s success. They really helped bring our skills to the fore and develop them further week on week.

I have made some amazing friends and have sent messages to all those who attended the CityLab to see if there was interest in coming together as a group and taking our ideas further; feedback has been positive and hopefully we shall get together again to start putting these ideas into action.

Jennifer Mulcair,
MSc in Public Health