Spanish monarch honours young Linlithgow engineer

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A university student from Linlithgow has received a worldbeating accolade at a royal ceremony held in the Spanish capital.

Darren Moran (21) of Clark Avenue, was flown to Madrid to receive an award for his participation in the ScottishPower Foundation scholarship programme.

The Strathclyde University student, who is studying a Masters Degree in Electronic and Electrical Engineering, was among 11 British recipients who proudly stood alongside other award winners from the USA, Mexico, Brazil and Spain itself.

The ceremony was held there as Scottish Power’s parent company Ibedrola is Spanish and the participants received their award from company chairman Ignacio Galan and the foundation’s chairman Ramon Castresana Sanchez.

The next step was a glittering reception at the magnificent Palacio de la Zarzuela hosted by its exceptionally high profile owner –King Felipe IV!

Darren, who attended St Joseph’s Primary in Linlithgow then St Kentigern’s Academy, had a private audience with the Spanish king in what he describes as “a once in a lifetime opportunity”.

He said:“It was an honour to represent the University of Strathclyde and the ScottishPower Foundation at such a high-profile event, and hearing the King’s respect for all the work the scholars are doing gave me a great sense of pride in the career path I have chosen.”

Darren also stressed that his time as a ScottishPower Foundation scholar so far has given him so much to build on as he makes his way in the energy sector.

He said: “The networking events have provided brilliant opportunities to gain an insight into the operations of the different ScottishPower businesses, reinforcing my career goals.

“The financial backing has allowed my time to be fully focused on my master’s degree programme,strengthening my engineering knowledge as I prepare to make the transition from university to graduate employment.”

The Linlithgow Gazette would like to extend its congratulations to Darren on receiving this very special honour.