Government gives green light for Harlow UTC

Published: 29 May 2012 at 10:05

Anglia Ruskin and Harlow College will open new University Technical College

Anglia Ruskin University and Harlow College have been given the green light to open a new-style academy for 14 to 19-year-olds.

The partners will open one of the Government’s 15 new University Technical Colleges (UTC), which are intended to provide a high quality technical education that meets the needs of modern business and the UK economy, on Harlow College’s Velizy Avenue campus. 

The Harlow UTC aims to equip its students with the skills needed for environmental engineering and medical technology.

The initiative was spearheaded by Harlow’s MP, Rob Halfon, Harlow College and Anglia Ruskin University, but also has the backing of top industry sponsors including Pearson UK, Raytheon, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), and global engineering giant, Johnson Controls.

Professor Michael Thorne, Chair of the UTC’s Board and Vice Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University, said:

“We are delighted to be working with the number one FE College in the country on this innovative new venture in which the curriculum will be focused on the MedTech sector and environmental engineering – both key strengths of Anglia Ruskin University.  Indeed we shall look forward to students coming on to our campus to use our stunning medical and engineering facilities.”

Colin Hindmarch, principal of Harlow College, said:

“The new UTC will have a strong focus on developing the skills needed for employment.  This will considerably increase the job chances for young people in Harlow, Essex and the wider area.
“Harlow UTC is ideally placed at the Harlow College campus; it’s easily accessible with excellent road and public transport links and there will be shared services with UTC students being able to take advantage of our excellent college facilities.”

He added:

“I am delighted that we have won this bid; many, many people have worked hard to make this happen. But it was thanks especially to two years of solid hard work from Robert Halfon MP, who has campaigned publically and behind the scenes, to bring a UTC to Harlow with all that it means for new jobs, apprenticeship training and the new opportunities for young people.”

The UTC will be awarded around £10m of funding to either convert and equip existing buildings, or pay for a complete new build, ensuring that any facilities are state-of-the-art.  The UTC will be funded in the same way as existing academy schools.

Harlow MP Robert Halfon said:

“For two years I have worked with Harlow College, Anglia Ruskin University and others to bring a high-tech vocational school to our town.  This will mean millions of pounds of new investment for Harlow, for jobs, and regeneration.  Adding to our schools, it will give local youngsters, aged 14 to 19 the chance to get high-tech skills and secure opportunities for the future.”

The Harlow UTC will offer GCSE courses to students in their first two years, including the Government’s key English Baccalaureate subjects, apprenticeships and technical training with a strong focus on medical technology and environmental engineering.