College project moves forward

Local Businessman Martin Ainscough with Cath Hurst Principal at Wigan & Leigh College at the site of the Lancashire proposed Wigan University Techology College
Local Businessman Martin Ainscough with Cath Hurst Principal at Wigan & Leigh College at the site of the Lancashire proposed Wigan University Techology College
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Have your say

PLANS for a new University Technical College (UTC) have been unveiled and Wiganers are being urged to tell the backers what they think.

Consultation is now open for potential students, parents, employers and members of the public to give their views and ask questions about the specialist college, which is aiming to have its doors open in September 2013.

The UTC will specialise in “process engineering and environmental technology” for students aged between 14 and 19 and will have a strong focus on work-based learning and entrepreneurship.

Students will also be encouraged to support charities, fund raising activities and take part in voluntary work.

The UTC, which will be home to 500 students on the site of the Old Gas Showrooms, will also work closely with the nearby Wigan Youth Zone and Wigan and Leigh College as well as forming a link with the University of Cenral Lancashire..

Cath Hurst OBE, Principal from the UTC’s co-sponsor Wigan and Leigh College, has called on people to offer their views.

She said: “We want all types of responses.

“Wigan and Leigh College will maintain a close, working relationship with the UTC and we also have UCLan as a sponsor too, enabling us to give students as many options for future education as possible.”

Core subjects such as Maths and English will take up 60 per cent of learning time for students until they’re 16. After that, they will only take up 40 per cent with the rest being spent on technical subjects.

Backed by multi-millionaire businessman Martin Ainscough, who is also supporting the Wigan Youth Zone, it aims to blend modern day curriculums, a greater emphasis on work placement and state-of-the-art facilities.

It will also specialise in Engineering, Green Energy and Manufacturing.

Mr Ainscough added: “This is a wonderful opportunity for the young people of Wigan.

“It won’t be for everyone, that’s not what we are saying, but it will give people the skills and work experience – which we have a great emphasis on – to build good careers.”

Consultation will be open until May 8 via www.wiganutc.co.uk.