University Alliance, an association of the UK’s leading professional and technical universities, has today (Friday 29 September) published ‘Let’s Get Technical: How to harness the power of professional and technical universities to deliver for the UK’.
Launched to coincide with party conference season, ‘Let’s Get Technical’ proposes five long-term goals for the next UK government, alongside a set of policy suggestions to help realise each goal.
The goals highlight how University Alliance, its members and its partners in industry can support the government in addressing some of the big challenges facing the country, as well as some of the big challenges facing the higher education sector.
In the briefing, University Alliance calls on the next government to:
- Develop a long-term post-18 education and skills strategy
- Support innovative regions and SMEs across the UK
- Embed universities in NHS and social care workforce planning
- Reform the funding and regulation of degree apprenticeships
- Address financial shortfalls for students and universities
Vanessa Wilson, CEO of University Alliance said:
“Alliance universities are underpinning the country’s economic growth and skills needs for the future. However, there is a lack of strategic direction for higher education, and government policy is currently disjointed. That’s why we are calling for a coherent long-term strategy, in which the government clearly articulates what it believes post-18 education and training is for, and how the higher education sector can support its full policy programme.
“Alliance universities are delivering quality research and innovation, educating our NHS workforce, and equipping graduates with the high-level skills that employers need. To truly capitalise on these strengths, we have proposed a series of policy changes to help us support long-term economic growth and deliver the pipeline of high-skills the country will need in the future.
Finally, we are asking government to put university and student finances on a sustainable footing. Without this, none of our other goals will be achievable in the long term.”
Professor Jane Harrington, Vice-Chancellor and CEO of the University of Greenwich, and the newly appointed Chair of University Alliance added:
“Across the UK, there are people, institutions and communities with the ingenuity, skills, and ambition to find solutions to our most pressing local and global problems. We know that professional and technical universities have an important role to play.
That’s why we are proposing five goals for the next UK government. With the right policies and practices in place, professional and technical universities can go further in supporting economic growth and delivering a better future for the UK.”