Holley Gibson

About me

I am a Secondary Teacher (Computing Science) at Fife Council. I completed a degree in Film and Media Technologies from 2012 - 2016 at Queen Margaret University Edinburgh before having my daughter and then entering hotel management as an events executive. I decided to return to university to complete teacher training and have now been teaching for 4 years. 

Left school

June 2012

Senior Phase

In S4 I achieved Standard Grades/Intermediate 2's (SCQF level 5) in: English, Mathematics, History, Art & Design, Chemistry, French, Geography and Music.

In S5, I achieved Highers (SCQF level 6) in: English, Chemistry, Music and Human Biology.

In S6, I achieved Highers (SCQF level 6) in Business Management and Geography and Advanced Higher (SCQF level 7) in Music. 

Choosing my Destination

Throughout my school career, I enjoyed exploring interests in music and technologies, spending much of my free time in the music department and involving myself in a range of extra curricular activities. With this in mind, I accepted an offer to study Film and Media (with music technologies) at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh. After university I started a family, welcoming my daughter in 2016, and then accepted a position as an events executive in the hotel industry. I quickly realised that I missed education, and the learning environment, and applied and was accepted for teacher training later that year. I had always dismissed the idea of becoming a teacher, probably because it was always something people had assumed I would pursue! To be honest, it was very difficult managing a young family and full time education again, but I realised that the end goal would be beneficial for our future and this inspired me to push through. I have now been working as a full time high school teacher for 4 years, and have loved every minute of it. Looking back, I do not regret the path I have taken to becoming a teacher, but I do think I could have realised my goals earlier if I had more seriously considered the advice of others and explored my options more fully. With this being said, experience of different industries can be extremely valuable and can help you realise what you truly want. 

Extra Curricular & Work Experience

At school, I was a prefect, member of the student council and enjoyed being a part of the multi-school choir, samba band and music department end of year concerts. Out with school, I was heavily involved with my local dance academy and continued piano tuition. I also worked part time in retail and as a dance teachers assistant in the evenings. At University, I volunteered with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and worked as an intern at a local radio station. I also volunteered as part of a group of international students for a 6 week program of work in Madagascar, building schools in their rural communities. 

Skills I've developed

Each of my experiences have helped me to overcome shyness, build communication and leadership skills and most importantly instilled a strong sense of resilience which has carried through to my career today. On the autism pathway, being naturally soft spoken and a quiet communicator, I was unsure if I would be successful in a classroom environment. Luckily I was able to draw upon skills developed in high school and university to build strong relationships with learners. With this being said, I strongly believe that nobody ever stops learning and growing. There is always room to improve, even if it is just a little every day. 

My Advice

The best advice I can give is to make sure you choose subjects which you enjoy and will be happy to spend time investing in. You are more likely to carry these subjects into Higher, further education and may end up using the knowledge and skills gained in your life long career. Do not worry about what your friends are doing, do what is best for you! Finally, make sure to do your best from day one, this will make your journey towards exams far less stressful and feel far more rewarding. If you don't achieve what you had hoped for, don't worry! There are always steps you can take towards your goals, and remember there are a multitude of people who will be happy to provide guidance and advice. Every experience, good or bad, will provide you with more knowledge of the world and will play an important part in your personal journey. I did not follow a 'typical timeline' in education or family life, but I am still proud of my achievements and would encourage others to not give up, even when the going gets hard.