Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (Dorset LEP) has allocated just over £1.3 million of Local Growth Funding to three local colleges and a university in Dorset – a significant local investment in our young people.
Dorset LEP’s investment will work to address key skills gaps and unlock talent and ambition across our local communities, supporting valued economic activity, as outlined in our emerging Local Industrial Strategy<https://www.dorsetlep.co.uk/local-industrial-strategy>.
Lorna Carver, Dorset LEP Director, said: “Increasing the local education skills offering and competitiveness is of great importance in consolidating Dorset as a great place to learn, and then work. In particular, these four projects demonstrate investment in the areas of arts, land-based studies and engineering & manufacturing.”
Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) will receive £51,000 for the purchase of new laptops and a bespoke locker unit from which further education students will be able to loan the computers, giving students free access to specialist Mac laptops fitted with the latest creative industry standard software. This project is expected to be operational in March 2020, it will upskill AUB students as well as support local creative industry businesses seeking skilled employees.
Kingston Maurward College (KMC), Dorchester, have been allocated £111,000 to build an Outdoor Education Centre and undertake college refurbishment works. The new centre will include a bouldering climbing wall which is a teaching resource and commercial asset. By late 2020, the land-based education college will have this new centre, a refurbished commercial kitchen and improved access roads.
Weymouth College will introduce an Engineering Centre of Excellence to Dorset thanks to a £605,000 investment, which will vastly improve advanced engineering teaching capabilities by paying for state-of-the-art equipment. Plans include a new digital media suite, allowing students to develop computer-aided-design and modelling skills. There are also plans to advance the College’s Electrical Engineering Centre at their Poundbury Campus, as well as the machinery and IT equipment available within the Centre of Excellence for Motor Vehicle Technology project recently completed, also supported by Dorset LEP.
Finally, £610,000 of skills funding from Dorset LEP will support Bournemouth & Poole College (BPC) in further establishing an Engineering Centre of Excellence in Dorset by increasing their engineering & manufacturing offering. This will involve the refurbishment of an existing building on Fulcrum Business Park for engineering and advanced manufacturing skills training and the creation of a workspace construction hub at BCP College’s North Road campus.