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KNOWLEDGE NEWS University hosts awards for achievements in business

The University of Wolverhampton has been named Midlands University of the Year in the 2019 Midlands Business Awards (MBAs).

The University of Wolverhampton held its fourth Business Achievement Awards (BAAs) on Wednesday 19th June 2019 at the Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton.

The University was commended for its innovation, investment and excellence in business as well as for its graduate success and employability at the awards ceremony held in Leicester recently.

Pictured: Prof Geoff Layer presents Russell Jones from Wolverhampton Wanderers with award

Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club was awarded Strategic Business Partner of the Year following collaboration between the two organisations including the revamp of the Molineux subway, a high profile Honorary Doctorate award given to Wolves manager, Nuno and an ongoing shared vision and commitment to the City of Wolverhampton.

Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor at the University of Wolverhampton, said:

We were delighted to have been named University of the Year in this year’s MBA Awards. There is a lot of optimism in Wolverhampton at the moment in terms of regeneration and investment, and a record number of graduates are going into work and further study from the University.

University graduates were also celebrated with Business Leader of the Year awarded to Dr Adrian Hallmark, Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors and a graduate from the School of Engineering and Graduate Start-up of the Year awarded to Sports & Exercise Science graduate, Nathaniel Keay, who has set up a successful recruitment company that exclusively supports the sports industry. The University’s apprenticeship programme was also reflected at this year’s ceremony, with Katy Blakemore, a Nursing Associate Degree Apprentice picking up Employee of the Year and Walsall and Black Country (NHS) Partnership receiving the Business Collaboration of the Year award in recognition of the work they do to ensure the region has skilled nurses. Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor at the University, said: "The BAAs enable us to celebrate graduates, employers and organisations who deserve recognition for their excellent contribution to business, enterprise

and the economy. Our impressive 96% graduate employment rate is testament to the strong partnerships we have built with industry and the commitment of our graduates to reach their potential. All shortlisted individuals and organisations deserve to be incredibly proud of their achievements."

Now in its 13th year, the MBAs recognise and celebrate success, talent, entrepreneurs and business development in the region.


The bi-annual awards, hosted by the University, provide the opportunity to acknowledge both individuals and organisations that have demonstrated business excellence in a number of categories. High-climbing businesses, employees and big achievers were all a part of the celebrations at this prestigious event.

Wolverhampton scoops Midlands University of the Year award

FULL LIST OF WINNERS: Employee of the Year Katy Blakemore, Nursing Associate Degree Apprentice from Cygnet Healthcare


“We pride ourselves on our collaborative work with industry to ensure we are bridging the skills gap in key sectors and driving growth for the local and regional economy and it is great to be recognised at such a prestigious event.”

Employer of the Year Enterprise Rent-a-Car Graduate Start-Up of the Year Nathaniel Keay from Mesolean Executive Search Academic Expert of the Year Dr Paul Hampton, Faculty of Science and Engineering Business Collaboration of the Year Walsall and Black Country Partnership (NHS) Business Leader of the Year Dr Adrian Hallmark, Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors Strategic Business Partner of the Year Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club

Pictured left to right: Ian Fitzpatrick, Simon Brandwood, Nigel Babb, Clare Schofield, Ninder Johal and Geoff Layer

The University of Wolverhampton presented an Honorary Doctorate of Sport to Nuno Espirito Santo at Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club’s last home game of the season on Saturday 4 May 2019. The honour recognises Nuno’s success over the last two seasons which has seen Wolverhampton gain recognition and attention internationally, returning a sense of pride back to the city and club. He has led the club to the Premier League after a seven year absence as well as taking the team to the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley. Nuno said: “It is a privilege and an honour to receive the honorary doctorate from the University. Thank you so much. It goes beyond me – it’s for all the players, the staff, the employees, the fans that come to Molineux. It is a commitment to do something together.


Wolves manager Nuno has spoken of his pride after being honoured by the University of Wolverhampton for his contribution to sport in the region.

It is a privilege and an honour to receive the honorary doctorate from the University. Thank you so much. It goes beyond me – it’s for all the players, the staff, the employees, the fans that come to Molineux. It is a commitment to do something together.

She has selected the University of Wolverhampton Alumni Mayoral Scholarship Fund – a new venture to support local people into higher education – and the Wolverhampton Suicide Prevention Stakeholders Forum as two good causes which she will raise money for over the year. Claire, who graduated in 1992 with a BA (Hons) in English and Spanish, said: "It’s a great honour to be Mayor and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate the city, promote the city and represent the city.”


“I feel very welcome in Wolverhampton. It has been two years and every day has been a day of warm reception. People have treated me really well and it’s really good to give something back.” Vice-Chancellor, Professor Geoff Layer, said: “The University is thrilled to have recognised Nuno with an Honorary Doctorate of Sport at the end of such a successful season for the club. In two years, Nuno has transformed Wolves – his first season at Molineux was a triumph as he led the club to promotion and the Championship title, and now we have seen a successful start to life in the Premier League and a Wembley FA Cup semi-final.”

A University of Wolverhampton graduate has become the 161st Mayor of the City of Wolverhampton. Councillor Claire Darke has represented the city's Park ward for 11 years.

National Brownfield Institute plans revealed Image courtesy of Associated Architects

Nuno receives honorary degree from University

University alumna becomes Mayor

Apprentices get fired up about manufacturing at new foundry

Concept designs have been unveiled for the first time of what the University of Wolverhampton’s new National Brownfield Institute could look like.

The first group of manufacturing Apprentices are getting fired up at the University of Wolverhampton’s National Foundry Training Centre in Tipton. The Foundry is part of the Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills – a collaboration between the University, Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership, Dudley College, Cast Metals Federation, Confederation of British Metalforming, Institute of Cast Metals Engineers and In-Comm Training. 40 apprentices from manufacturing companies across the Black Country, Birmingham, Leicester, Lincolnshire, Norfolk and Sheffield are currently studying for Level 3 qualifications in patternmaking, metalforming and toolmaking. Ian Fitzpatrick, Chief Executive of the ECMS, said: “It’s wonderful to see our first cohort of Apprentices bringing the Training Centre to life. The University, with partner organisations, has invested in the future of the region by opening dedicated training centres to equip people with an array of manufacturing skills – some of which have not been seen in the Black Country for years. “On the doorstep of the Black Country, apprenticeships are on offer for the industries that formed the back-bone of the industrial revolution."

The Institute will be part of the University’s £100m Springfield Campus development which is regenerating a brownfield brewery site close to the city centre.

The Institute will be home to a state-of-the-art research and innovation centre and will feature commercial testing facilities and lab space.

It will join the School of Architecture and Built Environment, The Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills, and the West Midlands University Technical College to form a construction and built environment superhub.

It will also house a national policy institute which will inform and guide future strategy development around brownfield regeneration, give specialist

For more information about the Springfield development visit:

New research centre secured

Apprenticeship's first year success

Inclusive Leaders Pledge signed

The University has secured European Regional Development Fund money to deliver a ‘Composites & Additive Layer Materials Engineering Research & Innovation Centre’ (CALMERIC).

Five students are the first to have completed year one of the Chartered Legal Executive Apprenticeship, which is raising the bar for legal professionals at the University.

Pledging its support to tackle a lack of diversity in the region’s boardrooms, the University has signed up to the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) Inclusive Leadership Pledge.

CALMERIC will support Shropshire and Staffordshire SMEs to carry out research and innovation in advanced engineering materials. Faculty of Science and Engineering experts will work alongside companies, utilising specialist materials for manufacturing and testing equipment.

The programme, which is celebrating a successful first year of building legal understanding and professional behaviours amongst apprentices, has been developed in collaboration with sector-leading employers and professional body, the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx).

A report, published last summer by the independent West Midlands Leadership Commission, set out a number of recommendations, including a call for existing leaders to ensure diversity and to identify talent and future leaders in their workplaces.

Find out more at:

advice on dealing with contaminated land and repurposing buildings and sites, and look at new and innovative construction methods such as modular housing.

Any business in Shropshire or Staffordshire interested in collaborating should call: 01902 323 298 or email:

To find out more about Degree Apprenticeships, visit the Apprenticeship Hub:

Businesses and organisations can get more information and sign the Inclusive Leadership Pledge online at:

Ground breaking moment for cyber security in Hereford

Staffordshire Commissioner engages University to step up cyber battle Small businesses across Staffordshire are being encouraged to be more vigilant in the ongoing fight against cyber security. The University of Wolverhampton in Stafford (UWiS) will be supporting the Staffordshire Commissioner for Police, Fire and Rescue, and Crime, Matthew Ellis, in an initiative to train designated cyber champions in the workplace. As a member of the Online Fraud Forum, UWiS is working with the Commissioner to encourage small businesses to attend a FREE training course to fight online fraud within their workforce and supply chains. The specialist training will give Staffordshire businesses the chance to get cyber-savvy and stay one step ahead of online fraudsters. For more information about becoming a cyber champion in the workplace visit: or call: 01785 247 622 and sign up for future training sessions by emailing:

University of Wolverhampton Racing’s F3 Cup team off to a fantastic start

The trail-blazing project on Skylon Park, Hereford Enterprise Zone, is a joint venture between the University of Wolverhampton and Herefordshire Council and part-funded by the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor, said: “The aim of the centre is to tackle the growing threat of cyber attacks which could significantly impact local, regional and national businesses. “The University will provide significant resources for research and development through our Wolverhampton Cyber Research Institute (WCRI) which is developing and leading an International Cyber Knowledge Hub to tackle threats in cyberspace with focus on providing expertise in relation to security for critical national infrastructure. The shared facilities will also allow private sector businesses to benefit from the University’s networks, expertise and specialist spaces."


The start of work on the £9 million Cyber Quarter - Midlands Centre for Cyber Security in Hereford has been marked by an official ground breaking ceremony.

Cllr David Hitchiner, leader of Herefordshire Council, said:

The new Midlands Centre for Cyber Security is a fantastic facility which promises to attract new hi-tech investment, draw expertise and create high-income jobs in the county. It will create a range of opportunities in the growing cyber security sector in Herefordshire, which is already established and highly regarded.


The 2,000 square metre building, designed by Associated Architects and built by Spellar Metcalfe, will provide significant resources for research and development across cyber laboratories, WCRI advanced training facilities and business space for up to 16 cyber companies. Find out more at:


University of Wolverhampton Racing (UWR) continued their dominant form at Donington Park, securing three P2s from three races, and 2nd place in the championship behind the 2018 winner, Cian Carey. The 2019 Racing Wolves F3 Cup team is made up mostly of first-year engineering students who have spent the winter months training and preparing for the season ahead. For the past three years, UWR has taken a top three position in the national F3 Cup Driver’s Championship. As the only University competing in the MSVR F3 Cup, UWR is taking part in all 18 rounds of the the competition, at world famous tracks including Brands Hatch and Silverstone. Find out more about the range of engineering courses on offer at Telford Campus at: and follow the UWR Race Team’s progress on Twitter: @UWRacing and Instagram: @uwracing



Profile for University of Wolverhampton

Knowledge News - Summer 2019  

The University of Wolverhampton hosts its fourth Business Achievement Awards and also celebrates winning Midlands University of the Year and...

Knowledge News - Summer 2019  

The University of Wolverhampton hosts its fourth Business Achievement Awards and also celebrates winning Midlands University of the Year and...