A friendship aged to perfection

Different countries, different courses, one common interest - whisky! A group of alumni first met through the Edinburgh Napier Whisky Society and now they meet up once a year in a different city for a wee dram. Alumni Callum Toulson and Duncan Reid tell us more!

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Whisky Society reunion in front of the Jack Kilby Computing Centre signThe Edinburgh Napier Whisky Society was founded in 2004 and provides ENU students the chance to meet up, drink good whisky and make lifelong friendships. 

A group of eight whisky-loving alumni formed an everlasting bond through the club. Despite being based at different Schools and studying unrelated subjects, they shared an affection for whisky and a friendship blossomed.  

Now graduated, the group reunite on an annual basis in a new European destination. Travelling from Scotland, Switzerland, Sweden and Germany, they meet up, share a laugh and explore a new city together, just like they did when they were new to Edinburgh.

In autumn 2019, their annual reunion brought them back to Edinburgh Napier where they visited some of their old haunts – including the Jack Kilby Computing Centre!  

See pictures of previous meetups below!

Callum Toulson and Duncan Reid

Callum Toulson graduated from Edinburgh Napier University in 2012 with a BA (Hons) Business Studies & Human Resource Management. During his time at Edinburgh Napier he played an active role in the Whisky Society, including being Treasurer and then President. Today, he works as a Pricing Specialist for Tetra Pak in Lund, Sweden. 

Duncan Reid completed his MSc in 2013 and was based in the School of Computing. He is the co-founder and partner in an IT Company based in Edinburgh, called Icelantic.

What advice would Callum and Duncan give to the new members of the ENU Alumni Network? 


Network, network, network.  

The more people you know and connect with, the wider your web is, and the greater the chance of landing that new job opportunity is.  

Keep in touch with your peers, you never know when your paths may cross again, be it personal or professional. My wife and I first met at the Whisky Society back in 2010, our paths crossed again in 2013 whilst I was on holiday in Sweden, and now we have a baby daughter together! 


The richness of both your social and professional lives will be so enhanced by a wider range of friends from differing backgrounds, beliefs and values. The interpersonal skills and life lessons that come from a rich variety of curated network connections is very much worth the time and effort involved in making and developing friendships. And – it’s a lot of fun too! 

Life is what you make it, and University life is just the same. One of the distinct advantages of Edinburgh Napier over other local universities, is its spirit on inclusiveness and diversity. That’s a strength students should lean on and take full opportunity to expand their social networks as few other opportunities for such rich friendships will present themselves in the world of work.

You must be craving a wee dram by now! What whiskies would Callum and Duncan recommend?

There are whiskies which suit all occasions. 

For a graduation day in the summer, sample a Glengoyne 12, and enjoy the summery toffee and vanilla undertones!  

Talisker Storm – a salty, hot dram from the Island of Skye, and steep in Scottishness. Got a slight edge, so a good one to reflect on before starting working life.

The alumni team would love to help you organise your next reunion. It could be with classmates or friends from a sport or society group.

Get in touch to discuss further!