- A Single Academy Trust jointly sponsored by the University of Salford, the Lowry & Aldridge Education
- Opened in September 2015
- 720 14-18 year old students by 2020/1
- Specialising in technical skills required for the Creative and Digital industries
- Pathways in TV & Film, Interactive Media and Graphics, Radio & Audio, or Interactive Media & Gaming.
The Department for Education announced in May 2012 that they supported the development of a new University Technical College at MediaCityUK, Salford Quays, which opened in September 2015. This landmark UTC works directly with some of the most prestigious names in the digital and media industry to revolutionise the way young people develop crucial skills and pathways to jobs.
The MediaCityUK UTC came about through a comprehensive network of partners across education and industry – led by the Aldridge Foundation, the University of Salford, and the Lowry. The UTC specialises in creative and digital industries as well as developing an entrepreneurial mindset amongst students. One of the key things that makes the UTC model special is the direct link with industry, giving students the chance to work with partners in MediaCityUK. The UTC’s employer partners include organisations such as ITV, Cisco, Flix, UKFAST, Unity, dock10, Oracle, Deluxe, Panasonic and Adobe. Alongside these students have also had the chance to work with Apple, Google, Autodesk and the BBC.
Founding Principal Anne Casey was appointed in December 2013, a month after the owners of MediaCityUK, Peel Media, announced the completion of a deal with the UTC to bring the £10.4m facility to the Manchester development. UTC@MediaCityUK is based in a 6,200 sqm building located at the junction of South Langworthy Road and Broadway.
The UTC building was formally opened by BBC Director-General Tony Hall, who said: “This college is nurturing the next generation of creative talent – the next generations of digital innovators. You can just sense a real entrepreneurial spirit, here and there’s a great sense of adventure already.”
Prior to opening Sir Rod Aldridge OBE, Chairman of the Aldridge Foundation, said:
“The MediaCityUK UTC will provide outstanding opportunities for young people to develop skills in the Creative Industries, an area of huge opportunity in our region. It will also allow employers to influence and shape education delivery to ensure that there is a developing talent pool in the region with the skills and aptitudes that the sector needs.”
The UTC Curriculum has been developed to respond to employer demand, drawing from the skills of partners across the area. It provides a new opportunity for young people from Salford and the wider North West area, with intake growing over the course of the next eight years to take 720 students by 2020. Alongside Aldridge Education the UTC is sponsored by the University of Salford and the Lowry.
In June 2016 Sharon Gardner succeeded Anne Casey as the UTC’s Principal. On a visit to the UTC in March 2107 HRH Prince Andrew said: “This UTC is like no other I have visited. The skills you are delivering to students are preparing them to such an advanced level that they may not go to university, but straight into employment.”