Wigan & Leigh College has secured capital grant funding from the Department for Education to deliver a project that will focus on training the health workforce of tomorrow. The £0.8milion project will refurbish a facility in the Centre for Advanced Technical Studies ensuring that the new T level course for Health & Care is delivered in the latest state of the art clinical training facilities.

The investment will establish the Centre of Excellence in Health and Social Care as the flagship in the new Centre for Advanced Technical Studies and is one of the first projects resulting from the collaboration between the College, Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (WWL), Edge Hill University and Wigan Council.

The investment will see the creation of new clinical skills development environment including a ward, manual handling suite, specialist science laboratories and a Health & Social Care careers hub, enabling students to undertake specialist pathways in occupational areas such as adult nursing, mental health nursing and healthcare professionals.

The T Level follows on from the College’s highly competitive pre-degree nursing programme that it has offered for the last 3 years in partnership with WWL. As well as their college course, students have had the benefit of a Practice Education Facilitator mentor from WWL as well as workplace learning within the Trust during the two years of their course. Students have progressed on to many top universities to continue their nursing studies.

Pre Degree Nursing Student Maryam Gilbert

The new facilities will not just be used by the college students. WWL will use the centre for staff development and training, whilst the careers hub will welcome primary and secondary school pupils to learn more about their options and long career goals in the health and care sector.

Anna Dawe, Wigan & Leigh College Principal said “This investment, the launch of the new qualifications and being able to work alongside WWL really does present new opportunities to our local community. The T level has allowed us to be creative with the content and delivery of the course so that responds directly to the skill need in Wigan and across Greater Manchester. The inclusion of the career hub also establishes long term skills planning for health that will benefit the borough”.

Richard Mundon, WWL’s Director of Strategy and Planning said “We are thrilled to be involved in this exciting and innovative collaboration that will improve education and skills in health and social care in the Wigan Borough; helping to support and grow our future workforce in these areas for the benefit of our local population”.

The Centre for Advanced Technical Studies opens in September 2021.

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