Secretary of State for Education The Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP, officially opens £7 million redevelopment of the SciTech Digital Innovation Hub

We welcomed the Secretary of State for Education The Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP on Thursday 21 October 2021 at a grand opening ceremony of the SciTech Digital Innovation Hub.

The Secretary of State for Education was presented by Yiannis Koursis, Principal and CEO of Barnsley College, and Helen Jaggar, Vice Chair of the College’s governors, to leading figures in Barnsley including the Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley, Councillor Caroline Makinson; Dan Jarvis, Member of Parliament for Barnsley Central and Mayor of South Yorkshire and the Deputy Lord Lieutenant Colonel George Kilburn MBE.

he Secretary of State for Education was accompanied on a tour to see the excellent facilities, workshops and specialist equipment for courses offered at the Hub including EsportsComputingT LevelsPhotographyBroadcast JournalismDigital MediaGames Design and Professional Studies.

Following the tour the Secretary of State for Education unveiled Barnsley College’s 3D holographic sign in front of invited dignitaries, students and staff.

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi said: “I really enjoyed meeting the inspiring students and staff at Barnsley College, where I opened their fantastic new SciTech Digital Innovation Hub. The Hub will make sure students for many generations to come have access to the high-quality facilities they need to progress and secure great jobs.

“They have pioneered T Levels – which, in their own words, combine of the best of apprenticeships and A levels – tailoring them to support local businesses with the skills they need.”

Yiannis added: “We would like to thank Secretary of State for Education The Rt Hon Nadhim Zahawi MP for coming along to officially open our £7 million redevelopment of the SciTech Digital Innovation Hub. It was an excellent way to mark the new chapter for our digital students.

“The staff and students are extremely proud to be involved in this very special occasion. At Barnsley College we put our students at the heart of everything we do, and it’s always a joy to hear them speaking so passionately about how wonderful the campus is. I feel privileged to be the Principal and to be a part of this fantastic learning community.”

The refurbishment of SciTech Digital Innovation Hub was supported by The Department of Education and The Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), with £5m worth of funding to support the £7m refurbishment. The Hub provides facilities to enable the College to deliver an exciting new digital curriculum in response to the digital skills gap, which threatens to cost the UK economy over £100billion in GDP growth.

Facilities within the SciTech Digital Innovation Hub have a special focus on digital industries including cyber security, network technologies, Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality alongside software and programming. SciTech will also be the home of businesses in a new Business Incubation Centre, including our local Chamber of Commerce, further strengthening the links between the College and the economy.

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