Students at Sheffield’s newest college confident of job prospects

Sheffield's University Technical College.
Sheffield's University Technical College.
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Students at Sheffield’s newest college are more confident of getting a job than those at mainstream schools, says a survey.

Every teenager quizzed at the city’s University Technical College said they were sure they would find employment after completing their studies – compared with just 71 per cent at conventional secondaries.

The college in the city centre opened last September and provides a range of IT, engineering and digital courses for young people aged 14 to 18.

UTC students were more confident they would be ‘job ready’ when they entered the workplace – all felt they would find a job that suited their skill set, while only 67 per cent of school students felt the same way.

And more than twice as many UTC students felt they had gained business know-how compared to their mainstream school counterparts.

Nick Crew, UTC principal, said: “We’re reassured to see students here feel confident about getting a job and the skills they are learning at UTCs are relevant.

“From this survey, we know our students value the specialist equipment and links to business and employers we offer.

“An education at a UTC is designed to open up opportunities for young people aged 14 to 18.

“We want all our students to enjoy a fulfilling career that matches their talents and interests.”

The survey also found UTC students were three times more likely to move onto an apprenticeship when they left college – 22 per cent planned to go down that route.

And of those who knew what career they wanted to follow, 18 per cent opted for engineering, compared to just 7 per cent at mainstream schools.

Almost nine out of 10 UTC students also felt they would end up in a career that they would enjoy.

The survey was commissioned by the Baker Dearing Educational Trust, a charity which promotes the UTC concept.

Lord Kenneth Baker, trust chairman, said: “It is essential young people have a good understanding of business and are well prepared to join the world of work. These surveys highlight students at UTCs gain an education that gives them greater confidence and skills that employers value.

“UTCs are playing an important role in helping to train the next generation of highly skilled technicians, scientists and engineers.”

Sheffield College and Sheffield Council are keen to open a second UTC, but their initial bid was turned down.

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