Northumberland College revealed that it will benefit from multi-million-pound government funding, which will be transformational for the college and position it as a leading further education and training provider for the North East.
The technical, vocational and specialist land-based college is one of 16 colleges across England that has been selected to work with the Department for Education as part of the government’s £1.5 billion FE Capital Transformation fund.
The college, which has campuses in Ashington, Berwick, Blyth and Kirkley Hall, plans to develop Ashington to further support an innovative and career-focused curriculum and provide students with access to world class facilities.
Nigel Harrett, Principal of Northumberland College, said:
“We are extremely grateful for our involvement in this multi-million-pound transformation programme to ensure sustained long-term investment in technical provision. The funding will enable us to create state-of-the-art resources and facilities, transform skills education and training for young people, adults and apprentices across Northumberland and contribute towards greater economic prosperity in the region.
“We are keen to engage with local employers and other stakeholders to inform this development and ensure the new facilities meet the skills needs of the future. We will continue to work with the Department for Education to realise our ambitious vision.”
Northumberland College has already experienced a dynamic phase of growth and transformation since its merger with Sunderland College and Hartlepool Sixth Form, which created Education Partnership North East – one of the largest college groups in the UK. The merger in March 2019 secured Northumberland College’s long-term future and created significant opportunities for its students and the local economy.
The strength of being part of a large college group has enabled much needed investment in facilities and resources at Northumberland College to enhance learning environments and strengthen the college’s specialisms.
Ashington Campus was part of an extensive re-development programme, which began in November 2019 across the college’s estate, and included the creation of a new health simulation ward and extensive refurbishment of existing buildings.
The student experience was also enhanced with the development of a welfare hub and access to a wide range of specialist support staff and services for students. The recent investments provide students with outstanding new facilities and support the development of higher-level technical skills.
CEO of Education Partnership North East, Ellen Thinnesen, said:
“We are proud of the substantial progress that has been made at Northumberland College since merger and this additional funding provides us with a fantastic opportunity to level up first-class facilities for technical and vocational students. The transformational impact this investment will have in Ashington, Northumberland and the wider North East region will be significant.”
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