Over 700 students from Dundee and Angus College heard a harrowing and thought-provoking speech on the meaning of respect.
Sylvia Lancaster, mother of murdered Sophie Lancaster, gave the cornerstone speech in a week-long series of seminars at the Arbroath campus.
In 2007 a gang of youths attacked Sophie and her boyfriend because they were dressed differently. Such was the brutality of the assault that Sophie later died in hospital of her injuries.
Learner engagement officer Katie Anderson said: “It was an emotional event but incredibly positive to hear Sylvia Lancaster talk to the students of her experience.
“It’s important for all our learners to think about respect and acceptance and to explore equality, diversity, culture, sub culture and personal choices with an open mind.”
The sessions formed part of ‘Respect Me’ week and were designed to stamp out prejudice, hatred and intolerance of individuals and subcultures.
As well as a series of talks and demonstrations, there were representatives from 20 organisations including Dundee International Women’s Centre and SAMH on hand to give advice and support.
Students were also given a fantastic opportunity to understand the concept of globalisation and diversity by tasting a wide variety of international dishes cooked by ESOL and Hospitality students.
Katie added: “The support from local businesses was outstanding. We had food donations from D&A Kennedy, M and M Spinks, Les Turriff and ‘3663’ which the students used to create their dishes.
“The Arbroath Community got right behind us and seemed to understand the need for our students to be effective contributors and responsible citizens in their community.”