Shropshire Star

New academic campus amazes careers leaders as completion nears

A new academic campus and enterprise hub in Telford has been described as 'exceptional' by careers leaders from schools within the Marches Academy Trust.

Careers leaders from Marches Academy Trust schools outside The Quad which is set to open in September

Part of the £86.5m Station Quarter project to create a vibrant new residential, educational and business community, The Quad is due to open in September and is expected to host more than 300 students a year.

Careers leaders from schools were blown away during their fact-finding visit to the new building in the heart of Telford.

Telford and Wrekin Council says that The Quad's mission is to 'retain and develop local talent and be the catalyst for creating careers in applied sciences and the digital sector'.

With collaboration between Telford and Wrekin Council, Harper Adams University, Telford College and other partners, the facility will create an academic campus featuring a state-of-the art digital skills and a business start-up incubation hub.

The 'Station Quarter' project is part of an 'Investing in Telford and Wrekin' programme which is looking to transform other areas of the borough including Oakengates and Wellington.

A total of £135m is being invested into these projects that includes £52m of government grants with a further £83m from Telford and Wrekin Council and other public/private sector partners.

Telford College will use The Quad to open a new digital and maths skills hub as they look towards equipping local people for careers in sectors such as cybersecurity, AI and robotics, virtual and augmented reality, cloud computing, wireless technologies, 5G innovation, and more.

Managing Director of Shrewsbury-based Interactive Opportunities, Andrew Goff, organised the visit from careers leaders at schools within the Marches Academy Trust.

Telford College Principal and Chief Executive, Graham Guest, said: "We see The Quad as a unique and ambitious alliance between industry and education, which will raise everyone's aspirations."

Elsewhere, Harper Adams University has announced they will deliver short courses in robotics, data science, e-business marketing, organisational change, sustainability and project management at The Quad this Autumn.

These courses will be the university's initial offerings at the new facility alongside a range of STEM-related activities to support local schools, colleges and communities.

Marches Academy Trust's Strategic Lead for Careers Education and computer science and ICT teacher, Liam Frances, said: "The Quad will be an exceptional facility for students to further their education. The facilities that it will offer will be outstanding and something that is perhaps not offered elsewhere currently."

Telford and Wrekin Council's Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Young People and Education, Shirley Reynolds added: "The Quad will re-define education, business innovation and digital skills provision in the region.

"We are delighted that Marches careers leaders have been given an early glimpse into The Quad before it opens, so they can promote the exciting opportunities this facility will bring to students across the region who will benefit from it.

"The Quad will open up huge education, training and business opportunities which are all part of our vision to create an innovative and energetic borough."