Keith Brown brings members' debate on the Winning Students 100 Programme to Scottish Parliament

6 March 2024
Staff and athletes of the Winning Students 100 Programme gather outside the Scottish Parliament to pose for a photo
Stakeholders of the new programme gather outside parliament after the debate.

MSP Keith Brown brought a members' debate to the Scottish Parliament to celebrate the success of the Winning Students programme and the launch of its updated successor the Winning Students 100 programme, through which Scottish educational institutions will continue to push the nation's sporting achievements to new heights.

The programme is an update of the existing Winning Students programme, which has, since its inception in 2009, supported over 1,700 world-class student athletes - including gold medal Olympians, Paralympians, and European and World Champions - to balance high-performance sport, with the demands of their studies. The programme is funded and supported by sportscotland, the Scottish Funding Council and the tertiary education sector.

Notable beneficiaries include Scottish long-distance runners Laura Muir and Eilish McColgan, and Olympic medal-winning swimmer Duncan Scott – a native of Mr. Brown’s constituency.

The Winning Students 100 Programme represents the next chapter in this legacy, providing support to 106 students in its inaugural year, with a comprehensive scholarship of up to £3,000 in funding, academic flexibility tailored for athletes, and a hardship fund for additional support if needed.

Among the beneficiaries of this new programme are Olympic Gold medalist curler Hailey Duff, Commonwealth Games gold medalist diver Grace Reid, and under-23 European 10,000m track record holder Megan Keith, as well as Lewis Stewart, Commonwealth Games 2022 Gold medalist and Paralympic 2020 Silver medalist, and Calum Douglas, Scottish Hockey Men’s Player and GB U23 – both of whom were in attendance in the public gallery during the members debate.

Commenting, SNP MSP for Clackmannanshire and Dunblane, Keith Brown, said:

“As the MSP for the University of Stirling, it’s important for me to put on record the University’s achievements, and to bring those achievements to national attention with this members’ debate.

“Never has this been so deserving than with the Winning Students programme, and its successor, the Winning Students 100 programme.”

“Over the past 15 years, the programme has supporter over 1,700 world-class athletes – including Alloa’s own Duncan Scott.”

“It is a testament to the hard work of the staff and students at the University of Stirling, and I commend the success they have had so far and wish them well for the future.”


Pictured from left to right:

Fiona Lothian (Triathlon Scotland), Kenneth Gibson MSP, Kaukab Stewart MSP, Lewis Stewart (cycling athlete, University of Strathclyde), Calum Douglas (hockey athlete, University of Edinburgh), Keith Brown MSP, Katrina Gibbon (Heriot Watt University), David Bond (University of Stirling).