WEST College Scotland has become the UK’s first college to take the Stand Alone Pledge, a demonstration of the college’s commitment to supporting estranged students.

Stand Alone is a charity that exists to support the one in five people of all ages across the UK who become estranged or disowned from their family or a key family member at some point throughout their lives.

Research by the charity has found that estranged students are three times more likely to drop out of education than the average student due to pressure, stress and isolation.

The Stand Alone Pledge is an initiative to promote greater awareness and support for estranged students in education. The college joins nearly 40 UK universities – including Glasgow, Strathclyde and the West of Scotland – by signing the Stand Alone Pledge and becoming a “champion institution”.

West College Scotland – which has a campus in Clydebank – will now work closely with Stand Alone to promote the College’s best practice to other champion institutions and to continuously improve its own support for estranged students by learning from others.

Audrey Cumberford, the principal of West College Scotland, said: “At West College Scotland, we are committed to continuously supporting our students to achieve their potential and improving the student journey. By taking the Stand Alone Pledge, we renew that commitment to our estranged students.”