A proposal for a new University Technical College (UTC), based in Newton Abbot, focusing on the Engineering, Water and Environmental sectors is out for public consultation during October.
University Technical Colleges are a new concept in education. UTCs will be equipped to the highest standards to provide top quality, technically-orientated courses. Starting at the age of 14, students will study technical subjects alongside the core GCSE subjects of English, Mathematics, Science and IT, integrating academic requirements with practical learning. The South Devon UTC will have places for up to 600 students, who will then progress to university or to jobs as technicians and apprentices. If successful, the school is scheduled to open in 2014/15, for both 14 year old and 16 year old entrants.
The public consultation events will be held as follows:
Tuesday 9th October, 6.00pm to 8.00pm, Harrison Building, University of Exeter (including tour of the facilities)
Thursday 18th October, 7.30pm to 9pm, Coombeshead School in Newton Abbot
Thursday 25th October 7.30pm to 9.00pm, South Devon College in Paignton
Parents, employers and potential students are invited to attend the consultation events to find out more about the UTC. Students will benefit from purpose built specialist facilities and will have the opportunity to study GCSEs and A levels alongside vocational qualifications in engineering and science as well as undertaking extensive project work with local employers and the University of Exeter. Students will develop their employability skills and undertake extensive work experience to ensure they will be well equipped to enter the world of work or progress to university.
These events will also provide a great opportunity for employers to play a central role in ensuring that the UTC’s curriculum matches the needs of the local economy and reflects the future needs of the priority sectors. Employers will be able to identify talented future employees and inject fresh ideas into their companies through extended work placements and project work. They will also be invited to support and mentor students throughout their time in the UTC.
The University of Exeter’s Deputy Vice Chancellor, Janice Kay, commented: “The University Technical College will play a key role in inspiring Devon’s young people to consider higher education and an engineering or science career. As a leading UK University we have an important part to play in raising the aspirations of local school students, and our extensive programme of outreach activity already demonstrates the opportunities offered through a university education to young people across the South West. The University Technical College would provide a new pathway to higher education to young people with a flair for engineering or science. We look forward to hearing local people’s views of the proposal as the consultation for this proposal gets underway over the autumn.”