It’s lights, camera, action for Alan!

A FORMER student of Dumfries and Galloway College is making his mark in television – and paid tribute to his lecturers for helping him on his way to BAFTA success. 

Alan Thurston, 30, is living the dream on screen after joining Glasgow-based documentary producers Tern TV, whose credits include the award-winning Being Gail Porter, The War Next Door: Scotland and Darren McGarvey’s Addictions.

The talented kit-coordinator travels across the country as part of the Tern team as their vision to give people a voice gives new kudos to ‘reality TV’. However, Dumfries – and the college in particular – will always hold a special place in his heart. 

“I didn’t do very well at high school and knew university wouldn’t be the place for me,” he smiles. 

“So, I was thrilled I managed to get enough grades to go to the college to do Visual Communication which I thought would be perfect for me… and it really was. 

“I was always quite good at art and doing anything practical. Starting my HNC in 2010 and then my HND. I felt I could excel into the creative industry. 

“From my time at college it got me to go on to University of West of Scotland to do a BA degree in Applied Enterprise. 

“From there, I went to the University of Stirling to do a BA Hons in Film and Media. I did work experience at the company I now work for in between my third and fourth year – they offered me a job a week after I handed in my dissertation. And I have been there for nearly 6 years now!” 

It might be easy to get carried away with three BAFTAs, working for the BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5, Discovery+ and National Geographic? 

“If it wasn’t for the college, I would never have gained the skills to go on to do a degree, let alone two, and get a job in the TV industry and have three BAFTA wins under my belt,” Alan is quick to add. “College pushed me to be my best.” 

Everyone at Dumfries and Galloway College is delighted for their former student and wish him continued success in his TV projects. 

College Principal Joanna Campbell said: “I would like to thank Alan for his kind words about his time here. 

“What he has gone on to achieve is truly inspiring – he is a great role model for the current and indeed the future generations of students.”