Q&A with a mentor
A Q&A with Bob MacDonald, CEO of Specialist Technical Solutions at Wood Group
Having achieved a hat-trick of degrees from RGU, Bob MacDonald is an alumnus with a routed personal and professional affinity with our university. Now one of the leaders of energy giant Wood Group, Bob continues to give back to his university by volunteering his time to support our students.
In this Q&A, we find out about Bob’s volunteering experience with RGU.
How did you initially become involved with RGU?
Having graduated from RGU on three occasions, I have a long standing connection with the university. I obtained my first degree in 1990, from what was then the Robert Gordon’s Institute of Technology, so my involvement with the institution goes back to its transformational years as it evolved into a leading university. I had a fantastic experience studying at RGU and after graduating in 2000 for the final time, I knew I wanted to stay connected with and contribute to the university which gave me the qualifications to pursue a successful career.
What motived you to get involved with volunteering at RGU?
My motivation comes from two strands. Firstly, as part of RGU’s alumni community I feel it is important to support the university and its students. Secondly, Wood Group is very proud of its heritage in the north-east and realises the importance of local academia in providing the next generation of talented employees. So I’ve always jumped at the opportunity to give back to RGU and enjoy supporting the professional development of its students.
What has been your experience with volunteering at RGU and do you have any highlights?
Over the years I have volunteered for RGU in many ways. I have enjoyed all of it but joining the mentoring programme was a highlight. I have mentored some fantastic students and have learned as much from them as they have from me. It’s a pleasure to spend time with them and help them to navigate their career decision making process and transition into professional life. I’m currently mentoring one student who is really focused and certainly has a traits of a future leader, so it’s been a pleasure to help guide this individual.
You are now involved with our Alumni Taskforce. Can you tell us a little bit about this initiative and why you were keen to contribute?
I’m delighted to be part of the Alumni Taskforce, which consists of fellow alumni from a range of professions. We’ve got an exciting mission to support the university in the development of a new approach to alumni engagement that will help RGU achieve its goals and aspirations. We are looking at ways of tapping into RGU’s global alumni footprint to foster support for the university from its graduates across the world. It’s an inspiring prospect to be engaging with RGU’s hugely talented word-wide alumni community. Watch this space!