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Minister visits the new ARU Peterborough campus

Published: 29 April 2022 at 12:29

Professor Ross Renton, Professor Roderick Watkins and Michelle Donelan MP outside ARU Peterborough

Higher and Further Education Minister praises degree apprenticeships on offer

The Minister for Higher and Further Education, the Rt Hon Michelle Donelan MP, visited ARU Peterborough yesterday to see first-hand the impressive progress the new university has made.

The Minister formally announced Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) as the higher education partner for the city’s new university during an online launch in July 2020. Now, less than two years later, the first stage of the university is almost complete, ready to open its doors to students this September.

During the visit, the Minister was given a tour of the ARU Peterborough site by Professor Roderick Watkins, Vice Chancellor of ARU, and Professor Ross Renton, Principal of ARU Peterborough, and also met representatives from Cambridgeshire-based technology companies Thorlabs and ALS Global, and Peterborough-based Perkins Engines Company, a subsidiary of Caterpillar.

Michelle Donelan MP visiting the construction site at ARU Peterborough

ARU Peterborough was established with the aim of increasing opportunities for young people in and around the city, which has long been a higher education ‘cold spot’. Since 2020 it has worked closely with over 170 businesses and organisations to ensure the courses provided will deliver a pipeline of talented graduates with the skills needed by local companies.

Courses offered by ARU Peterborough range from degrees in Electronics & Robotics and Environmental Management to a number of new degree and higher apprenticeships, which have been developed in conjunction with local employers.

ARU is already one of the UK’s largest providers of degree apprenticeships, working with over 500 regional and national employers. The degree and higher apprenticeships at ARU Peterborough, in subjects including nursing, social work, and digital and technology solutions, provide the opportunity for people to earn qualifications while gaining valuable employment skills.

The Minister for Higher and Further Education, the Rt Hon Michelle Donelan MP, said:

“It was fantastic to visit the new campus at ARU Peterborough and I was especially impressed by the range of degree apprenticeships on offer that have been developed alongside local employers so that this area has the skills needed to boost productivity.

“Degree apprenticeships are a key part of our skills revolution and the number of degree apprenticeships have nearly doubled since 2018-19. We want to see that strong growth continue so I urge any students and employers interested in finding out more about degree apprenticeships to speak to ARU Peterborough about how you can build on your personal aspirations or business growth within this community.”

Professor Roderick Watkins, Vice Chancellor of ARU, said:

“ARU’s mission is to transform lives through education and research, and that is why we were determined to lead the development of the city’s new university. Thanks to tailor-made courses and wonderful teaching facilities, ARU Peterborough promises to provide life-changing opportunities for young people from Peterborough and the surrounding region.”

Professor Ross Renton, Principal of ARU Peterborough, said:

“From the very outset, we were determined that our portfolio of courses precisely matched the needs of our local economy. Not only was it a pleasure to show the Minister the fabulous new facilities that are taking shape on the ARU Peterborough campus, we were also able to discuss the range of employment-focused courses we are offering.

“Companies have been incredibly supportive of our vision, and we are delighted to be able to launch ARU Peterborough this summer with a number of degree and higher apprenticeship opportunities which allow local people to either enter or continue with their employment while gaining degree-level qualifications.  

“We are looking to continue to grow our portfolio of degree apprenticeships over the next 12 months, and we would be keen to hear from any companies who would like to discuss their training needs, or would like to sign up to our Peterborough 50 apprenticeship pledge.”
Professor Ross Renton, Professor Roderick Watkins and Michelle Donelan MP in discussion

Please visit https://aru.ac.uk/peterborough for the latest information about ARU Peterborough, and contact [email protected] to find out more about the degree and higher apprenticeship opportunities on offer.