Colleges group receives £4.5m to deliver in-demand skills

By Tim Aldred

15 Nov 2023

The Lancashire Colleges

The Lancashire Colleges Group has received £4.5m of government funding to help deliver the skills most in demand by employers across the county.

The Local Skills Improvement Funding has been awarded by the Department for Education (DfE).

This additional investment will allow colleges from across Lancashire to build new training facilities, providing students with the opportunity to learn on the latest technology and develop skills needed for successful careers.

The colleges will continue their work with local employers, designing and developing new, flexible courses that align with needs identified in the Local Skills Improvement Plan which was published earlier this year.

A Skills for Sustainability project will be led by Preston College working in collaboration with Blackburn College, Lancaster and Morecambe College and Nelson and Colne College Group.

It will support the development of cutting-edge teaching facilities and learning resources to enhance the training opportunities available related to the implementation and adoption of new net-zero carbon technologies in the Construction, Energy and Transport sectors.

A Digital, Cyber and AI Employability Skills project will be led by Burnley College working in collaboration with Blackburn College, Preston College, Runshaw College and West Lancashire College.

Bespoke courses will be designed to grow the digital skills of Lancashire’s current and future workforce from programming and coding to artificial intelligence and robotics.

Skills from Farm to Fork will be led by Blackburn College working in collaboration with Myerscough College, Blackpool and The Fylde College, Lancaster and Morecambe College, Runshaw College and West Lancashire College.

They will create new, sustainable kitchens and a demonstrator farm to showcase the most sustainable practices and offer students ‘hands-on’ training.

Rosie Fearn, director of the Lancashire Colleges Group, said:  "The additional funding will help our colleges to continue their work with local employers, to help prepare young people for rewarding careers and to provide the current workforce with the skills needed to embrace new technologies.

"Lancashire’s colleges will create new, responsive and flexible skills programmes working with local employers and industry specialists. By working together our colleges will ensure that state-of-the-art facilities and inspirational learning environments are available across Lancashire.

"Many of these will have added-value as demonstrator facilities, allowing the colleges to raise awareness of the opportunities that the latest low-carbon and digital technologies can bring."

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