Students Move Into Sheffield’s Second £10 Million UTC
Sheffield’s second University Technical College (UTC) has been completed and students have moved into the new building today, Monday September 26th.
UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park campus, built by BAM Construction, has been handed over on time as planned. A total of 137 students have started at the UTC, and moved into the £10 million facility. They spent the first two weeks of the new term completing an induction and employer visits, being previously based at Oasis Academy Don Valley nearby.
Sarah Clark, Principal, UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park campus, said: “I am thrilled to welcome students to our fantastic new building and want to thank everyone who has supported us. The innovative curriculum and facilities have been designed with employers and prepare young people for great careers in the healthcare and sports science, and computing sectors.”
Jason Pink, Construction Director for BAM, said: “We’ve used a range of modern methods to make this building happen very quickly and on budget. At the same time our team has been local itself, used the services of a range of other local companies, and we’ve helped six young people further their apprenticeships. The build has been a very positive experience all round, and this has been based on the close working relationships established here and our early involvement in the scheme. I’m delighted to see young people here so soon after handing over.”
Student Lauren Darwin, aged 16, who aspires to become a paramedic, said: “I want to go on to university and train as a paramedic. It’s great to be able to meet and work with employers to understand some of the skills.”
Student India Hancock, aged 14, is a national level swimmer who is considering a career in sports coaching. She said: “The UTC facilities are really good and very different to other schools. I like being able to develop practical skills in a subject that relates to a future career.”
Student Alex Ibrahim, aged 15, plays ice hockey and wants to go into medicine. He added: “It’s great to move into the new building. I’ve enjoyed my first day and the employer visits since starting with the UTC.”
The UTC specialises in training 14 to 19-year-olds in the technical skills that employers need for the healthcare and sports science, and computing sectors.
On their first day of moving into the UTC, computer students worked on robotics, sports science students took part in a triathlon challenge in the fitness suite and operated specialist equipment that tests athletes’ reflexes and reaction times. Meanwhile, healthcare students discovered how to assess vital signs in a session led by staff from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
At the UTC, students complete a technical qualification in one of the specialisms as well as traditional academic qualifications: GCSEs and A Levels. Some Year 12 places are still available. Call 0114 2603970. Visit https://www.utcsheffield.org.uk/
Clive Betts MP, for Sheffield South East, commented: “It is very encouraging to see the city’s second UTC breathing new life into the area, and providing a legacy for young people and employers, as part of the broader multi-million pound Olympic Legacy Park development.”
The Sheffield College, Sheffield Hallam University and Sheffield Chamber of Commerce are sponsoring the UTC. Based on the Olympic Legacy Park, it is one of 11 new UTCs that opened nationally this month.
Jason Pepper, Chair of the UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park Campus Steering Group, and Executive Director, The Sheffield College, added: “This is an exciting milestone for students, employers and the city. The Sheffield College has been delighted to lead on this visionary project because we are committed to supporting the regional economy, creating jobs for young people and filling skills gaps for employers. I want to thank everyone who has backed this project for their steadfast commitment and support.”
Councillor Jackie Drayton, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families, said: “I am delighted to see students starting at the University Technical College this September. The new campus provides students with the opportunity to study alongside elite athletes, use the cutting-edge facilities for healthcare technologies, sports and sports science as well as extend the range of learning opportunities for young interested in careers in the health sector, medical and sports technologies, or programming and system design. These are all growing areas in the global as well as the local economy and the new UTC offers the opportunity for 14 to 19 year olds to work closely with local employers and universities at the cutting edge of development in these sectors.”
Students will benefit from £600,000 of specialist equipment including a sports science laboratory with a Batak Pro machine that tests athletes’ reaction times and reflexes and develops hand and eye coordination, and a Monark rehabilitation trainer used by injured and disabled sports people to develop cardiovascular fitness; a fitness suite with the latest cycling, running, rowing and weights machines; a health and development suite which includes a flexible hospital ward set-up and area for an ambulance; computer labs including Raspberry Pi and robotics equipment; and a research laboratory for virtual reality technology.
The healthcare science specialism leads to careers in medicine, dentistry, veterinary, pharmacy, physiotherapy, nursing and midwifery and becoming a paramedic. Sports science leads to careers as an elite athlete and becoming a sports scientist or personal trainer. The computing specialism links to careers as a cyber-security analyst, web developer, computer programmer and games developer.