The Foundry Technology Affinity Space at the University of the West of England is funded by the Institute of Coding and will equip students with vital digital skills and ensure they are ready for the workplace. The industry-themed facility provides a space on campus where students can build their professional identity through working with industry partners on paid projects that fit around their studies. Aside from being home to UWE Bristol’s Enterprise Studios, the Foundry is also a digital event space, hosting a high-profile calendar of technology outreach and engagement events across cybersecurity, computer science, creative technologies and STEM subjects designed to widen participation around coding and digital skills.
As part of the investment the university also launched new masters level courses in cyber security and data analytics available to students in a variety of different formats (traditional degree, degree apprenticeship or standalone CPD modules on a full or part time basis).
- The Foundry was officially launched in May 2019.
- It was part funded by a £1 million investment from the Institute for Coding, which was matched by the university.
- The Institute of Coding is a consortium of businesses, universities and professional bodies aiming to tackle skills shortages in digital technology.
Science and Innovation Minister Chris Skidmore said: “As we rely more on new technologies and cyber threats become more sophisticated, the Foundry Technology Affinity Space will provide the vital skills needed to meet the opportunities and address the challenges of the future. The impressive state-of-the-art facility with its cutting edge technology will introduce a range of innovative new courses for students, enabling them to go on and compete successfully in the global digital economy.”
UWE Vice-Chancellor Professor Steve West said: “The Foundry is a major investment that will connect our students with globally-renowned industry partners, and will give them invaluable insight into what digital skills and innovation the future workforce will need. Deep and meaningful collaboration with industry and the world of professional practice will hugely benefit our students not just during their degrees, but in their futures as they progress into the digital industry. I look forward to seeing what our students will create in this innovative new space.”