East Surrey College, part of Orbital South Colleges, has been awarded a share of £2.6m funding from the Department for Education's Strategic Development Fund to invest in new green and digital technologies. This will help improve links with local businesses to develop and enhance their green skills in the drive towards a more sustainable, rural economy.
Green careers are becoming increasingly popular as people and businesses become more aware of the urgent need to protect the environment. Today's workforce faces significant skills gaps for these jobs, but with the right training programme and learning, employees can gain an edge in their careers and be future-ready.
The College is leading the local skills agenda by collaborating with seven other colleges from Hampshire and Surrey to support growth in green industries specifically linked to retrofit (construction), electric and hybrid vehicles.
The journey towards a low carbon economy starts at the top with over 4,000 hours of continued professional development (CPD) being delivered to senior leaders and educators to help them better understand the challenges and opportunities presented by clean growth. These new skills will be cascaded to learners meaning local businesses will have access to the home-grown talent they need for the jobs of tomorrow.
Kam Dehal, Executive Director - Commercial & Partnerships at East Surrey College said: "This funding is making a big difference to our College and in turn, the local businesses and communities. We believe that upskilling our staff with skills and knowledge through sustained, high quality CPD is crucial for them to excel in their roles and remain aligned to the needs of businesses."
The funding is also creating more online courses for businesses as part of the Innovation South Virtual Campus. Check out this FREE resource at: Innovation South Virtual Campus (em3.isvc.co.uk).
As part of the funding, East Surrey College has received four new cars that will be used to support the teaching of 'Green Technology' in cars.
These incorporate four different technologies:
- The Renault Zoe - a Full Electric car
- The Ford Fiesta - a Mild Hybrid car. This has technology similar to Formula 1 cars where a small 48 volt battery can give an assist, in this case designed to reduce the fuel load on the engine and improve fuel economy.
- The Toyota Yaris - a Full Hybrid car which can run on either petrol or electric. The battery is only charged whilst the engine is running.
- The Mitsubishi Outlander - a Plug-in Hybrid which can run on either petrol or electric but has the advantage that you can charge the battery whilst parked as well as during driving.
Richard Brooks, Business Development & Projects Manager, commented: "This range will really enable us to give our students an in-depth look at the new technologies. The Mitsubishi Outlander has also been designated as the College Tow car and will be used to take our Motor Sport team's race car to the track, thereby improving our green credentials."
To discover more about East Surrey College's green skills courses, visit: www.esc.ac.uk/employers/green-skills or contact the Employer Services team:
01737 788316 / EmployerServices@esc.ac.uk.