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KNOWLEDGE NEWS New Science Centre celebrates official launch The University of Wolverhampton’s new multi-million pound specialist Science Centre is officially open for business.

The centre was completed in early 2018 and offers high quality workshop, office and category 1 and 2 laboratory space over 4,000 square metres.

Already, the University’s Paramedic Science students are guaranteed a job with the service if they pass their course and all necessary professional tests.

It caters specifically for science, technology and engineering businesses in the aerospace, automotive, building technology and life science sectors.

The move means the service has changed its name to West Midlands Ambulance Service University NHS Foundation Trust, becoming the first university-ambulance service in the country.

The Science Centre’s first seven tenants are Crestwood Environmental, Deeo Design and Engineering, Vehicle Occupant Safety Centre, Storm Gaming Technology, Aliksir, Rosendale Group and MSV Consulting, with two more set to take up occupancy by the end of the year.

The University has recently set up its Emergency Management and Resilience Centre at its Telford Innovation Campus which looks at issues around emergency planning, disaster management, resilience and response at a local, regional, national and international level.

All seven joined businesses from the Science Park’s Technology Centre, Creative Industries Centre and Development Centre at the expo in October.

Pictured left to right: Nigel Babb (Wolverhampton Science Park Commerical Director), Ian Oakes (Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton and Ninder Johal (Black Country LEP Board Member)

Nigel Babb, University of Wolverhampton Science Park Commercial Director, said: “It was really pleasing to see the Science Park community and other city businesses come together for the expo and the official opening of the centre. Since the building has opened we have had lots of interest in the space.”

Professor Ian Oakes, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University and Chief Executive of the Science Park, said: “The Science Centre offers unrivalled space to businesses involved in science, technology and engineering and very much provides a step change in the type of facility available in Wolverhampton.

The centre was funded through a £4.8 million grant from the Growth Deal to the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership, with the remaining £5.3 million coming from the University.

“We see it not only as a fantastic investment for the city and its regeneration but also it provides a strong attraction for businesses to relocate here and help us retain and develop highly skilled and qualified people, including our graduates.”

Designed by Fairhurst Design Group and built by Clegg Construction, it was named Best Large Commercial Building at the LABC West Midlands Excellence Awards earlier this year.

The University of Wolverhampton and West Midlands Ambulance Service have joined forces to create the UK’s first universityambulance trust. The two organisations have forged the new partnership which will see them working together on collaborative projects, research, sharing clinical expertise, joint curriculum development and staff exchanges. It will also involve the University helping the service to develop and accredit the continuous professional development of its staff.

The £10.1 million centre at the University of Wolverhampton Science Park was launched as part of a Business Expo showcasing park tenants’ services on Wednesday 24 October 2018.

A networking breakfast and workshops were followed by the launch of the centre and a tour of the new facilities.

Introducing the UK’s first university ambulance trust

For more information on the Science Centre and its facilities, visit: or phone: 01902 824 000.

Elite centre to boost region’s manufacturing revival Based on a Hub and Spoke model, the employerled training facility for the region is designed to build on the region’s renowned industrial heritage by providing specialist training, short courses and apprenticeships, helping to close skills gaps identified by employers. The ECMS Hub is based at the University of Wolverhampton’s new multi-million pound Springfield Campus, and was the site of a launch event on 11 October hosted by journalist and television presenter, Steph McGovern. ECMS training centres, dedicated to upskilling employees and training new apprentices in metal forming skills, are now fully operational across the Black Country. The Spoke at Dudley College focuses on advance welding training, while the Institute of Cast Metals Engineers (ICME) moved its headquarters to the Tipton ECMS Spoke in the summer – the new National Foundry Training Centre has advanced moulding and melting facilities used to deliver foundry training, designed and developed by the Cast Metals Federation and the ICME. The most recently launched ECMS Spoke is the National Press and Tooling Centre, designed and developed by the Confederation of British Metalforming and In-Comm Training and

located at the In-Comm Training Academy in Aldridge, focusing on the delivery of toolmaking apprenticeships and technical courses. Over £1.4 million has been invested in creating a modern toolroom at the Academy that features a host of new equipment including two 110 tonne state-of-the-art presses and a £500,000 BSTA-280 tonne press. Ian Fitzpatrick, Chief Executive at the ECMS, said: “It’s well known that the manufacturing industry has an ageing workforce and that bespoke training courses – specifically matching industry requirements – can be difficult to source. This is a key strategic project for the Black Country which links further education and higher education with local, regional and national employers. “Together with our partners, we have designed manufacturing facilities equipped with worldclass equipment where world class training will be delivered by some of the finest technical experts in the business.” The ECMS is a collaboration with the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership. The LEP approved £8.5 million for the project and the partners have invested £4 million. Ninder Johal, Black Country LEP Board Member, said: “We are delighted to have worked with partners from the University and training providers to manufacturers and employers to ensure that this new state-of-the-art facility will deliver provision that doesn’t currently exist in the Black Country, and in doing so support the continued transformation of its economy.” For more information on the ECMS, visit:


The new £12.5 million Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills (ECMS) was officially launched in October, marking a significant investment in the future of high-value manufacturing in the Black Country.

Together with our partners, we have designed manufacturing facilities equipped with world-class equipment where world class training will be delivered by some of the finest technical experts in the business.


Find an apprentice to fit

Are you a local or national employer in the manufacturing industry looking to upskill the future workforce? The ECMS is working with employers not only across the Black Country, but as far afield as Poole, Sheffield and West Yorkshire, to fill multiple apprenticeships vacancies. All apprenticeships last three to four years, start at Level 3 and meet the New Apprenticeship Standards with a variety of delivery models available. Apprentices will learn on the job at the ECMS Hub or one of the training Spokes equipped with new training rooms, metallurgy and metrology labs with access to partner training centres and state-of-the-art engineering facilities. Christopher Ravenall, 20, is now a pattern and toolmaking apprentice with Elkington Brothers Ltd based in Great Barr, Sandwell. He said: “I didn’t have that much luck going through the traditional education system so thought that an apprenticeship would be a good alternative route to take. My father is a toolmaker and I’m really keen to learn as much about the industry and engineering as I can in order to have the brightest future.” If you would like to get on board as an employer, please contact Trevor Codner at the ECMS on: 0800 953 3222 or: 01902 321 663. ECMS partners and apprentices join Steph McGovern to celebrate the launch of the ECMS

Engineering team place third in F3 Cup

Cyber security experts fighting cyber crime

Engineering students from the University of Wolverhampton Racing team (UWR) celebrated a top-tier position in this year’s national MSV F3 Cup Championship. UWR secured third place at the end of the season, marking the third year in a row that the only university competing in the competition has placed in the top three positions. UWR engineering students have benefited from the recent £10 million investment in facilities at Telford Innovation Campus, and get to work on racing cars in the F3 Cup, the IMechE Formula Student competition and the British Hillclimb Championship. The University’s partnership with Morgan Motor Company means students also get to work on two Morgan development cars, which the team raced in this year’s AR Morgan Challenge.

Keep up-to-date with the latest UWR news on Twitter: @UWRacing

The University and Herefordshire Council have secured £9 million funding to develop a new Centre for Cyber Security in Hereford. The new centre, expected to be completed in 2020, will offer high quality research facilities as well as providing office space for cyber businesses and advanced training facilities designed to tackle threats in cyberspace. Cyber security experts at the University are already creating innovative new technology to support large organisations in securely sharing and regulating their data. Led by Professor Prashant Pillai and Dr Gregory Epiphaniou, the Wolverhampton Cyber Research Institute (WCRI) has been awarded more than £125,000 funding over three phases by the Cyber Security Academic Start-ups Accelerator Programme. The team aim to create a decentralised data management platform to minimise execution times in data collection processes and log rotation, storage and processing of the communication networks within organisations. Dr Epiphaniou said: "This is an excellent source of funding to help commercialise innovative research. We hope to setup a university spin-out at the end of this process.”

Summer showcase of successful start-ups Enterprise Action, the fourth successful iteration of the University-run project also known as SPEED, hosted the event to celebrate the success of students, graduates and other entrepreneurs who have turned their business ideas into a reality through the project’s valuable support.

A showcase event in June shone a spotlight on some of the most successful entrepreneurs supported by the University.

Stone’s Throw Media delivered a keynote speech, sharing their entrepreneurial journey from graduates to successful video production company. Following a networking lunch, 20 more businesses joined them in a showcase exhibitors’ area. Google Digital Garage also delivered a workshop on the benefits of using Google Analytics for businesses. Part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, Enterprise Action/Speed supports the creation and growth of sustainable businesses across the Black Country, Shropshire and Herefordshire through match funded grants, consultancy, workshops and networking opportunities. For more information, visit:

The project is just one example of how the new Centre for Cyber Security will spearhead solutions for businesses in this problem area. Cybercrime currently costs the UK between £18 billion and £27 billion a year. 65% of all large UK companies reported a breach in the last year and threats to cyber security are persistent and constantly evolving.


Professor Ian Oakes, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University, said: “We are delighted with the progress we have made in all of the championships in which we have competed. We have committed sponsors on board, students have their own cars to work on and we’re competitively racing, providing real, hands-on engineering experience for the team.”

The University has successfully secured grant funding of £4 million from the Marches LEP Local Growth Fund and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for the centre, which will be located on Skylon Park in the Hereford Enterprise Zone.

The new Centre will stimulate an enhanced base of businesses engaged in cyber security solutions which will improve insight for businesses on the challenges faced in the future and drive up levels of innovation activity.


Graham Wynn OBE, Chairman of Marches LEP

For more information, visit:

Design Academy initiative nurtures creative talent

Start-up support for service veterans

A leading creative communications agency welcomed University of Wolverhampton design students to its Midlands headquarters as part of its successful Design Academy programme.

The University’s ‘Supporting the Unsung Hero’ business startup programme, in partnership with Forces Enterprise Network and Veteran Owned UK, will offer complete ‘boots to business’ support to the Armed Forces community.

Students joined Top Banana to learn the ins and outs of the industry and support on real life client briefs. Driven by the agency’s Art Director, Dave Pinches, the Design Academy’s goal is to help young people progress into the industry.

The collaboration was announced as part of Armed Forces Week and will enable service veterans to join the awardwinning training and mentoring course, complemented by further support and networking opportunities.

University welcomes second wave of apprentices The University of Wolverhampton continues to build on its commitment to providing employers with higher level skills, opening its doors to the second full cohort of Higher/ Degree apprentices. 84 new students are studying for a range of Higher/Degree Apprenticeships in the Faculty of Science and Engineering, with 32 businesses on board including Interclass plc, Turner & Townsend, Wates and Atkins Global. Apprentices will be studying Construction Management (Built Environment, Architecture and Civil Engineering), Chartered Surveying, Civil Engineering, Digital Technologies Solutions Professional, Healthcare Science Practitioner, Manufacturing Engineering and Design and Development Engineering.

Meanwhile, more than 50 students started the Senior Leader Master’s Degree Apprenticeship in September, aiming to boost their career credentials. Michele Roberts, Head of the Apprenticeship Hub at the University, said: “The University has been running its successful Apprenticeship programmes for over a year and we now have 400 Apprentices studying across three of our faculties – with more coming on board this new academic year. “This is another important milestone for the University’s ambition to provide a range of Degree Apprenticeships, helping a wide range of employers both locally and further afield to use Apprenticeship Levy funds to invest in the skills needed to lead and grow a competitive workforce.”

David Jones, Managing Director at Interclass plc, said: “Having experienced last year’s apprenticeship programme, supporting such enthusiastic young minds further drives our company’s business potential for the future.” Designed by employers, universities and professional bodies, Degree Apprenticeships offer an alternative to a traditional degree course by bringing together university study with paid work, delivering high-tech and high level skills. Employers interested in learning more about Degree Apprenticeships should contact the

Apprenticeship Hub on: 0800 953 3222 or email:

Nursing apprentice partnership shortlisted for award A partnership between the University’s Apprenticeship Hub and Cygnet Health Care, a private health care provider, has been shortlisted for a national award.

Demolition degree builds new opportunities The University of Wolverhampton has signed an agreement with the Institute of Demolition Engineers (IDE) to provide a new undergraduate qualification. The Bachelor of Science (Honours) Demolition Management will be partly delivered by IDE up to Foundation level and then topped up by the University. IDE practitioners have been involved in the development and delivery of the new degree. This follows the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the University and IDE, providing significant opportunities for students and existing practitioners. The University launched the first Demolition Management Master’s degree in Europe last year. The new qualification was announced at the EnTRESS ‘This is Demolition’ event held at Springfield Campus recently. Jackie Dunne, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University, said: “This important partnership with the IDE will ensure that there is a ladder of education for young people which links back to the construction industry.”

Groundbreaking marks next phase of new campus

The partnership is in the running to win Apprenticeship Employer of the Year, alongside companies such as Barclays and Direct Line Group, at the Personnel Today Awards 2018.

Cygnet is a leading independent provider of specialist mental health care services and one of the first providers to introduce Nursing Associate Foundation Apprenticeships into the independent sector, helping to address the national shortage of registered nurses. 21 Cygnet employees who work for the organisation as support workers are studying to become nursing associates through the new Nursing Associate Foundation Degree Apprenticeship, which was launched by the University in March 2018. Mandy Blanchard, Head of Learning & Development at Cygnet, said: “The bespoke programme takes the form of an apprenticeship, where the participants work in our hospitals, for a minimum of 30 hours a week and spend one day a week studying and being supported by lecturers from the University of Wolverhampton. “We are pleased to be helping address the national nurse shortage through this unique apprenticeship programme and it’s great that this has been acknowledged with an award shortlisting.”


University representatives were joined by main build contractors ISG, members of the project team and key partners at a Springfield Campus ground breaking ceremony. Work has officially started on the new home of the University’s School of Architecture and Built Environment at the £100m campus development in Wolverhampton. The flagship facility, designed by Associated Architects, combines the original clock tower building with a striking new build element on the former Springfield Brewery site. Vice-Chancellor Professor Geoff Layer said: “It’s a momentous occasion for the University after buying this site back in 2014. Developing Springfield is all about an ambition to make a difference by developing skills within the workforce around us and through regenerating what was once a derelict brownfield site.”



Profile for University of Wolverhampton

Knowledge news - Winter 2018  

The University of Wolverhampton celebrates the official launch of a new Science Centre at their Science Park and also announces plans to dev...

Knowledge news - Winter 2018  

The University of Wolverhampton celebrates the official launch of a new Science Centre at their Science Park and also announces plans to dev...