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New technical training college founded in East London with UCL support

22 March 2013

The latest University Technical College to be approved by the Government will be built in East London by the Centre for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (CEME) in partnership with UCL, Prospects Learning Foundation and Ford. Other industry partners who will assist in the design and delivery of the curriculum include BP, National Grid and Network Rail.


The college, to be known as East London University Technical College (Elutec), will combine core classroom studies with much-needed technical training for young people aiming to pursue a technical career.

Six hundred students aged 14 to 19 will attend the college, which is located on the existing CEME campus in the Thames Gateway Regeneration region. UCL will contribute both to the educational programmes and the governance of this new breed of educational establishment.

UCL's world-class teaching materials and facilities will be opened up to students, while events both at UCL and at Elutec will be designed to allow students to benefit from the connection. Through mentoring and support, as well as expert leadership, Elutec hopes to close the gap between the different groups who are all crucial to the engineering industry.

UCL Engineering intends to contribute directly to Elutec’s educational programmes and, as appropriate, its governance. Specifically, it will do the following:

  • Contribute to the development of curricula
  • Provide access to UCL's world-class research and educational facilities
  • Provide access to events at UCL
  • Provide access to teaching materials and directly support Elutec educators
  • Directly engage with students at Elutec and organise science-based activities there
  • Provide leadership through the engagement of leading subject experts with Elutec
  • Provide mentoring and support for highly able students who might be suitable to study at UCL and other leading universities

UCL’s involvement with the scheme has been led by Professor Anthony Finkelstein, Dean of UCL Engineering, who himself undertook an engineering apprenticeship in the East End of London. He said: “I spent two years working in every aspect of a precision engineering firm to get my Chartered Engineer status, and while I have forgotten many of the skills I acquired, I maintain a profound respect for the immense skill, experience and ingenuity of the engineers I worked with.

“Practical ability is essential to building an advanced and innovation-based society; innovation needs to be realised if it is to have any purpose. Engineering is a continuum where everyone, from the fundamental researcher to the quality control team, is a necessary part of the whole.

“Fundamentally, if we want to change the world, we can’t do it alone.”

Elutec will also take advantage of the strong manufacturing focus of its local area, which is home to many household-name manufacturers who have an increasing need for the talent that Elutec will produce.

Bill Williams, CEO of CEME, said: “We believe that the formation of Elutec represents a revolutionary new approach to solving the skills shortage affecting industry in the UK which is hampering economic growth.

“We will be providing these boys and girls with a gateway to apprenticeships, to good job prospects and careers by providing them with a realistic introduction to the world of work."

Students should complete their studies at Elutec with a deep technical appreciation of engineering and product design, prepared to join one of the many manufacturing employers in the area or to undertake further study.

The new college is planning to receive its first intake of students at the beginning of the autumn term in September 2014 and to have a full complement of students in September 2015. More information can be found at

If you are interested in finding out more about how you might get involved in UCL's work with Elutec please contact Simon Collins, Education Developer and Coordinator in the Faculty of Engineering Sciences, by emailing

Page last modified on 22 mar 13 16:06

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