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University of Salford responds to Government’s Industrial Strategy

Wednesday 5 April 2017

THE UNIVERSITY of Salford set out how it is responding to the Government’s Industrial Strategy at the House of Lords on April 3.

Prime Minister Theresa May unveiled plans for the new strategy earlier in the year, with a plan which included developing the nation’s skills, investing in science, research and innovation, encouraging trade and inward investment, and cultivating world leading sectors.

The event was hosted by the University’s Chair of Council the Right Honourable Baroness Beverley Hughes and showcased the University’s plans to an invited audience of leading figures from industry and education including Robert Holt, Managing Director Carillion Local Government Services and Jason Phin, Apprentice Scheme Coordinator from Siemens.

Guests also included notable alumni including Tim Smeaton, Managing Partner at technology consultants Kubrick Group.

Professor Helen Marshall, University Vice-Chancellor explained how the new approach to learning at Salford – through innovative industry collaboration zones (ICZs) – aligned perfectly to the aims and objectives of the Industrial Strategy, addressing recognised skills gaps and ensuring a future workforce with high level technical skills.  

She said: “We are the university of industry and that's a given, but now we need to look forward to what the top ten jobs will be in ten years’ time. The University of Salford sits alongside a series of 21st century industries.

“We're at the heart of MediaCityUK, with the BBC and ITV using our facilities and students. We have a world renowned School of the Built Environment, fourth best in the UK, high up in world rankings.

“The big challenges on the planet are multi-disciplinary and our ICZs cross health and wellbeing, sport, engineering and digital, addressing real-world problems. We're already attracting some big names to the table – including Siemens, Barclays, Santander, Cisco and the NHS.”

Baroness Hughes introduced Salford and Eccles MP and Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Rebecca Long-Bailey who outlined her party’s thinking on UK industrial strategy and the key role of education in building the skills economy.

Speaking at the event, Rebecca Long-Bailey said: “In cities like Salford, the agricultural world turned into an industrial one – a process that transformed and continues to transform the world. The North West and Salford have key economic and industrial strengths. We've got to make sure we have a deep collaboration between industry and universities and it's vital the government continues to invest in research and education.

“One of our strengths is advanced manufacturing and Salford was one of the first to realise that. Having graduates with the right skills is the lynchpin of the industrial strategy. I'm proud Salford is on the way to achieving its goal. It is a critical voice in achieving the technological advances of the future.”

Tim Smeaton of Kubrick Group said: “It's mandatory that education should be at the forefront of disruption. We're looking for graduates who are team players and who are able to work across a range of disciplines, and this is precisely what the University of Salford is setting out to achieve through its ICZ programme.”

Baroness Hughes said: “By universities like Salford working in partnership with industry we can help the UK compete better, grow our economy and reduce the disparity between regions.

“We're here tonight as we want to share our approach to education and how we can contribute to skills economy whilst at the same time setting our graduates up for an excellent career, rooted in industry.”

Professor Marshall added: “Through our exceptional industry partnerships, we’re providing creative solutions to real issues and guaranteeing a work-based learning experience for our students. That is why Industry Collaboration Zones (ICZs) are our single strategic priority and we’re passionate about them.”