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Making an Impact: FE Colleges and the regional economy

Wednesday 8th February 2017

Following an official merger in August last year, North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College are working to ensure young people have the best career opportunities ahead of them.

Susanne Davies, Marketing Manager, discusses:

“Following our merger, North Warwickshire & Hinckley College and South Leicestershire College have developed a shared vision, ‘to be an irresistible learning partner to individuals and businesses, driving up productivity and growth across North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire’.

“Working closely with businesses and Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), the College Group has designed an innovative learning offer that focuses on LEP priority areas and skills gaps. This strategy ensures the highest positive impact to the local, regional and national economy.

As a result we specialise in a number of sector areas:

Engineering: STEM subjects are a major government focus, and with an extra 130,000 people expected to be working in engineering over the next five years in the Midlands alone, (National Careers Service 2016) it is a major priority area for the region. Working with a number of small, medium and large employers, the College Group offers full-time and Apprenticeship programs designed to meet these industry demands.

Health and Life Sciences: Another, LEP priority area, the Health Care Sector is set to boom over the next few years with 41,000 more skilled people predicted to join in the next three years (National Career Service 2016). The College Group has established links with NHS Trusts and provides a number of full-time and Apprenticeship programmes in this area.

Construction: The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) have recently released a report stating that the current skills shortage is the biggest barrier to growth for the Construction sector in the UK with 80,000 new construction workers needed to meet demand in 2016 alone. The College houses a specialist Construction Facility located in Hinckley, providing learners with a real-life working environment.

Logistics: Transport and logistics is a booming economy within the UK, with 23,000 more people predicted to be working in the sector by 2020 (National Careers Service 2016). The Midlands is experiencing high demand for trained fork-lift truck drivers, operatives and engineers. This is not only due to an ageing workforce in the sector but also a number of new developments in Birch Coppice Industrial Estate, Magna Park and Bermuda Park. The College has established relationships with a number of Fork-Lift Truck employers including Jungheinrich, Toyota and Impact Handling as well as a specialist training facility located in Hinckley.

“Apprenticeships are playing a leading role in this strategy. With the reforms changing the way in which Apprenticeships are designed and funding, it is now vital that we work closely with employers to ensure their training needs are met and young people are equipped with the jobs they need to pursue a long-standing career.”




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