Derby has become the latest UK city to join an innovative Royal Navy scheme to develop engineering and technical skills in its students. The city’s Manufacturing University Technical College (UTC), which will open this September, has joined an exclusive group of colleges across the country affiliated to the Royal Navy. Five are now in the scheme and several more are in the pipeline.
The long-term aim of the scheme is to help address the nationwide shortage of engineers. The students get to work on exciting projects designed by Royal Navy engineers, visit naval facilities, and gain careers advice. In turn the Royal Navy will be able raise the profile of many of its current exciting engineering projects. The potential UTCs are selected because of their strong links with local industry or because they are close to naval bases and establishments.
Derby Manufacturing UTC is a partnership between Derby College, the University of Derby, Rolls-Royce Plc, Bombardier, Toyota Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd, Derby City Council and a wide range of supply chain employers working in local manufacturing and engineering.
The UTC is currently under construction in Pride Park and will have capacity for up to 600 young people aged 14 to 19. They will study core GCSE’s, A levels and engineering qualifications enhanced by project based learning, work placements, employer site visits and industry expert lectures.
Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology, Philip Dunne MP, said: “These courses provide our young people with transferable and future-proof skills. Derby’s local company is the world-renowned Rolls-Royce, where the UTC already works with the Aerospace Division.
“This new Royal Navy affiliation will develop a nuclear curriculum, working with Rolls-Royce Submarines Division to give students the opportunity to work across a broad range of projects to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers.”
The four other UTCs are in Plymouth; Bristol; South Wilts, in Salisbury, and Energy Coast Workington, in Cumbria. Several others across the country are in the pipeline.
The initiative is endorsed by the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas, who said he wanted to encourage more youngsters to be ‘part of the engine room powering our national success,’
The First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas said: “A national transport manufacturing hub, powerfully spanning the civil and defence sectors, Derby is of strategic importance to our Nation’s engineering base. I am therefore delighted that the technology-fuelled, 21st century Royal Navy is affiliated to Derby Manufacturing UTC.
“The talented young people educated and trained at this forward-looking College will go on to make a valuable contribution, not just to manufacturing in Derby and the East Midlands, but to the UK’s national growth and performance in leading edge technology.”
Capt Andy Cree, the Royal Navy officer who is leading the UTC project, said: “The Royal Navy aims to support the development of young engineers in the UK, to increase the quality and quantity of technically able young people.”
The potential UTCs are selected because of their strong links with local industry or because they are close to naval bases and establishments. Derby UTC also has affiliations with Toyota and Bombardier.
Principal Designate Philip Morris concluded: “This is an exciting announcement as we approach the opening of the UTC.
“It will mean that young people of Derby will have the opportunity to work with Rolls-Royce (Submarines) and the Royal Navy to enhance their understanding of real life engineering.”