UTC Sheffield celebrates first birthday

Principal Nick Crew and students celebrate UTC Sheffield's first birthday

Principal Nick Crew and students celebrate UTC Sheffield's first birthday - Credit: Archant

Students and staff celebrate a significant anniversary

A pioneering university has celebrated its first birthday with double the number of students now on its roll. The £9.9m UTC Sheffield opened last year, the first of its kind in Yorkshire in Matilda Street and offers 14 to 19-year-old students the opportunity to complete traditional qualifications, including GCSEs and A Levels, in addition to a technical creative and digital or advanced engineering and manufacturing qualification. This new academic year saw 260 new students join the UTC and there are now more than 450 students.

Nick Crew, Principal, UTC Sheffield, said: ‘We’ve had an amazing year that has gone so well. I cannot thank our staff, employers, the universities, Sheffield Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Sheffield City Council and lead sponsor The Sheffield College enough for their support in making the UTC a success. ‘The feedback from our students, parents, employers and the Department for Education has been so positive. The progress made by students in the first year is positive as indicated by both Year 10 GCSE results in science and technical learning and AS Level examinations and technical learning taken by our Year 12 students. Recruitment into our second year is healthy with currently more than 450 students on roll.’

There are a total of 600 places overall, which are being filled through a three-year phased recruitment process finishing in September 2015. More than 40 employers are supporting the curriculum. Students can join UTC Sheffield in Year 10 or Year 12. Hermione Archer, a Year 12 student who has just joined the UTC, said: ‘I chose to come here because it is so different from other sixth forms. The facilities are amazing and I’ve enjoyed meeting so many new people from different schools. My aim is to become a web designer in the future and the opportunities here will help me do that. It is exciting and very different.’

Jake Fields, a Year 11 student, who has completed one year, said: ‘I have been at UTC Sheffield for one year and enjoyed every single minute. Everyone is here to learn so the environment is great. There is a business focus and I really like that. Everyone is creative and imaginative, which is brilliant, and we share our ideas. I am planning to go onto the sixth form next year and after that, the sky’s the limit.’

The UTC has been sponsored and led by The Sheffield College with Sheffield Hallam University and Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and Industry as co-sponsors. Sheffield City Council has provided the land on a 125-year lease at a peppercorn rent.

Andrew Cropley, Chair of the UTC Sheffield governing body, and executive director, The Sheffield College, said: ‘The first birthday of UTC Sheffield is truly something to celebrate. It has been an achievement that exemplifies the extraordinary things that Sheffield can achieve when it really pulls together.’

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Richard Wright, executive director, Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said: ‘It is hard to over state the significance of the UTC methodology and how much business appreciates what it offers.

‘The UTC has delivered everything it said it would in the first year and, as a result, so have employers. I have never seen such a good example of employer engagement.’

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