New Lincoln technical college opens to students

Lincoln joined the growing list of cities with a University Technical College (UTC) this week, as the doors of Chad Varah House opened to Lincoln UTC’s first intake of 14 to 19-year-olds on Monday.

Hundreds of students will be attending the college, which focuses on engineering and the sciences, alongside core qualifications such as GCSE English and Mathematics.

Chad Varah House

Chad Varah House, the home of Lincoln UTC for the 2014/15 academic year (Photo: Daniel Ionescu)

Lincoln UTC is one of 13 university technical colleges opening this month, all of which are backed by a university, often with industry partners.

Students at Lincoln UTC will benefit from the know-how of a two educational institutions – the University of Lincoln and Lincoln College – as well as a wide range of employers, including engineering company Siemens, plastic experts Luxus, farming engineers Great Plains, and the Royal Air Force.

Dr Rona Mackenzie, Principal of Lincoln UTC, said: “I am privileged to lead Lincoln UTC and excited to welcome our students here. They have a unique opportunity – to train as scientists and engineers in the exciting context of real-life industry experiences.

“Our students will be immersed in theoretical, technical and practical learning activities from the outset. Our goal is to produce graduates who are well rounded, confident and articulate, and ready to move seamlessly into employment, training or higher education.”

Chad Varah House is only a temporary home for the college, which is currently working on refurbishments to another former University of Lincoln building, the Greestone Centre. Approximately £1 million has been invested into refurbishing the old art faculty building and installing state-of-the-art technical equipment such as autoclaves and DNA extraction tools.

Greestone Centre, as seen under maintenance for Lincoln UTC

The Greestone Centre is currently undergoing maintenance work, in order to become the UTC’s permanent home next year (Photo: Gregor Smith)

Paul Birt, HR Director at Siemens Lincoln, said he was “personally proud” of the effort going into making the college a success. “University Technical Colleges will play an important role alongside other training routes in helping us develop the talent required for tomorrow’s economy,” he added.

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