New initiative to support professional development of recent graduates

A new initiative aimed at helping recent graduates with their ongoing professional development has been launched by the University of Aberdeen's Alumni Relations team in collaboration with the Business School and Careers Department.

The joint campaign – Connect, Inspire, Succeed - will include a series of events which kick off this Wednesday (February 19) with a talk by medical graduate Dr Tharaka Gunarathne, a clinical psychiatrist and medical educator turned speaker, trainer and consultant for business and education.

The University already offers a comprehensive programme of social events and activities for alumni in Aberdeen called Aberdeen Connect, as well as events throughout the year in Aberdeenshire and Moray, Edinburgh and London. Last year, 2,000 graduates attended a total of 56 alumni events in Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Luxembourg, Warsaw and Athens, as well as in multiple locations across the US, Mexico, Nigeria, India, Malaysia and China.

Robert Donelson, Executive Director of Advancement at the University, said the Connect, Inspire, Succeed programme will offer tailored workshops to support professional development.

“We designed the programme for alumni to learn, develop skills and network with businesses as a way of supporting their career and personal development. We want to encourage conversations that will inspire them to think differently and make the most of the network around them,” he said.

“While the University and the Careers Service already support graduates in many ways, this programme aims to provide additional opportunities for recent graduates to continue to engage with the University and feel supported in their transition from study to the workplace.

“We are very excited to be welcoming Dr Tharaka back to Aberdeen for his talk, Think Big with Dr Tharaka. The insights he offers on the human mind, health, interpersonal dynamics and principles of business psychology are aimed at encouraging attendees to maximise their performance goals and improve their mindset.”

To book a place at Dr Tharaka’s talk at King’s Conference Centre, Old Aberdeen, on Wednesday at 1730hrs, go to

Meanwhile, a new Alumni Volunteer Programme has also been set up with the aim of encouraging more alumni to support new graduates, from providing internships or graduate jobs, to becoming a career mentor and helping at recruitment events. They can also become network or recruitment ambassadors, lead alumni groups in their area, or participate in the Business Committee or on one of the University’s Advisory Boards.

More information about the various opportunities open to Alumni Volunteers can be found here: