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Background information on UTC Swindon, a new University Technical College UTC Swindon will be opening its doors for the first time in September 2014 and its vision is to be a college where engineering and innovation can flourish. It will cater for 600 14 to 19 year olds interested in pursuing a career in engineering. For these young people, it will provide a fantastic opportunity to gain highly desirable skills and raise their aspirations in progressing to careers in the engineering industry in all its diverse forms. Young people from a wide range of local towns and villages are eligible to apply – including Burford, Calne, Chippenham, Cirencester, Cricklade, Devizes, Fairford, Highworth, Hungerford, Malmesbury, Marlborough, Pewsey, Purton, Swindon and surrounding villages and hamlets. By providing a high quality technical education from an early age, UTCs nationwide are a vital, active and additional educational choice for young people who will help to fill the UK skills gap. Across the UK, other UTCs are opening, reintroducing the option of a specialist technical education: five are already open, 12 will open in September 2013, 15 next September, including UTC Swindon, with a further 13 in 2015 - bringing the total to 45. UTC Swindon will be run by a Trust owned by Johnson Matthey Fuel Cells and Oxford Brookes University. It is a requirement that all UTCs in the country are sponsored by a university. Johnson Matthey Fuel Cells is a leading speciality chemicals company underpinned by science, technology and by its workforce. Johnson Matthey has three divisions worldwide: Environmental Technologies, Precious Metal Products and Fine Chemicals. More information is available at www.matthey.comOxford Brookes University is one of the UK’s leading modern universities and enjoys an international reputation for teaching excellence and innovation as well as strong links with business and industry. The university’s Faculty of Technology, Design and Environmentis leading the education planning at UTC Swindon. More information is available at www.brookes.ac.uk UTC Swindon has chosen its preferred site for its new £10m state-of-the-art building at Bristol Street, Swindon – at the heart of the railway village in a location generously supplied by Network Rail, one of the main partners. As well as being within easy walking distance from the train and bus stations, the Bristol Street site is central to the engineering and educational heritage of the area. As part of the original Great Western Rail works, it creates a link between the ‘historic engineering’ and the ‘engineering future’ of the local area. BAM Construction has been appointed as building contractor and a planning application has been submitted to the local authority, Swindon Borough Council. Anticipated building work will begin in the autumn of 2013, subject to planning permission and final Government approval. As parts of the site’s industrial heritage, The Old School Building and the iconic Water Tower will be key features. Both are grade II listed structures and they will be treated sympathetically. If plans are approved, the Water Tower will be restored and brought back into educational use. The overall aim is to create an inspirational and iconic environment. UTC Swindon will be a vocational setting, preparing young people for the world of work with an industry-based curriculum from 8.30am to 5.30 pm Monday to Thursday, finishing at 4.30 pm on Fridays – just like being at work. The aim is for students develop a work ethic, with no ‘homework’ apart from exam revision although of course students will be able to access their learning online outside these hours for independent studyLearning will be achieved through employer set ‘projects’ which will tackle real industry issues. Students will be grouped into learning companies where they will learn to act and behave in teams. These companies will provide pastoral support and will act as a vehicle for enterprise, competition and performance management. Engineering employers will provide project support and work experience. Alongside engineering, all 14 – 16 year olds will also take core subjects at GCSE and relevant A levels will be on offer at Post-16. There will be a wide range of enrichment activities and physical education.Already, industry partners are lining up to support UTC Swindon – BMW UK Manufacturing Ltd, Alcatel-Lucent, Halcrow Group Ltd, Honda of the UK Manufacturing, Intel Corp UK Ltd, Network Rail, Nationwide Building Society, and Thames Water are just a few. A link is also being developed with the proposed new Ministry of Defence Technical Support Unit to be based at Lyneham. No students will miss out on the core curriculum or basic qualifications. For 14–16 year old students (Key Stage 4), technical studies will account for 40% of the curriculum with the other 60% spent on core subjects. Learning will cover aspects of the major disciplines in engineering – chemical, civil, electrical, mechanical. In addition, all students will study a range of GCSEs including mathematics, English and science, with options to do a modern foreign language. For post-16 students (Key Stage 5) technical studies will account for 60% of the curriculum and core studies 40%, with relevant A Levels on offer for progression to university. Excellent careers guidance will be available, particularly for support into higher level engineering courses and employment in the sector. All students will also have time dedicated to physical education, citizenship, careers education and guidance, and personal, health and social education. Work experience will also be very important as a key part of the curriculum and student experience. Swindon has been very fortunate to get the go ahead for its UTC. Young people interested in a specialist full time technical education in the surrounding area will have the same opportunities as others where UTCs are opening successfully. And the option will also be available in the south of Wiltshire where a UTC is opening in Salisbury – South Wiltshire UTC, with details on its website: www.wiltshire-utc.co.uk


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