UTCs were created to provide employers with the skilled workforce they need and to open doors for young people to access quality technical and professional qualifications. Our staff, students, parents and employers describe the impact of their UTC experience below.
Our teachers say...
“I’ve often felt, working in traditional schools, that engagement with employers was severely lacking, whereas at the UTC, it’s at the forefront of everything we do. Learning from highly skilled people already doing the jobs that our students wish to pursue as a career is an invaluable experience for them. Most of our students will leave after five years of study, having completed successful digital projects with dozens of organisations. This not only engages the student, but allows employers to see the local talent pool as well, which is a powerful experience for everyone.”
– Shaun Whorton, Head of Engineering
UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park
“You have the freedom to teach in the style you want to teach in, allowing the students to be more passionate when you can captive them during the lesson. Its also great to be part of a team that share regularly, to help each other to be better instead of following the same style. I also feel it’s better to work in a place where you feel appreciated.”
– Andy McCarron, Science Teacher
“Lincoln UTC is successful because it fosters the interests of its students. The specialist focus on science allows us to spend more time with the students and therefore the quality of teaching results in a deeper understanding. Seeing them learn and grow into successful careers in the STEM industry clearly shows that the programme works.”
– Kirsty Hickling, Head of Science
“Through now having worked at seven very different schools, I have developed my philosophy of the leadership of learning to reflect the challenges faced by young people in the fast moving twenty-first century which is mirrored by the ethos of the UTC. Working at the UTC allows me to continue to be passionate about providing a broad, balanced inclusive curriculum for all our students that is based around a love of life-long learning and excellent teaching, in a climate of mutual dignity and respect which is closely linked to employer engagement. The UTC ethos produces the highest standards of achievement and progress for our students reflecting a high level of professional commitment from all school staff, our linked employers and our students alongside their families. It is a privilege to work for an organisation which really does put students at the centre of our core purpose. Our focus is on destinations for the individual and this is driven by the moral compass that underpins the education offered by the UTC. It is genuinely a pleasure to work with young people knowing you are making a positive difference to their lives.”
Our students say...
“Health Futures UTC has helped me to discover alternative career paths through the curriculum and lectures from employers. These lectures have also opened my eyes to the range of jobs available in the NHS and the health care service. Thanks to the UTC I have been able to pick a career path that is more suited to my skills and personality. I feel like studying at Health Futures UTC has set me up for a good future and opened many doors for me as a future employee. Since joining the UTC 4 years ago my confidence has grown dramatically, and I don’t believe I would be the same person I am today without the opportunities Health Futures UTC has offered me. The UTC’s focus on independence has pushed me to become more resilient and self-motivated which have both been qualities that have spread to my personality and other aspects of my life.”
“Throughout my 2 years with you all, I was constantly amazed at how much time you all had to take out of your day to help not just me but all of us when we needed you. The GPUTC is like no other school I’ve seen, the atmosphere as you walk in the building is so happy, focused and busy it automatically makes you want to do great things. I have no doubt in my mind that for many years you will be inspiring many more students to do great things.”
Though my time is coming to a close with you guys, I will never forget the impact you had on my life. I turned up in year 10 with no friends, no one I recognised and the first thing that happened is that I was overwhelmed, however, even though some were new and others there from the start, all the staff I spoke to were so supportive and kind, I instantly felt I was in good hands. That never changed. Now, I have friends, 10, I’ve never had 10 friends, but now I do, and that is thanks to you guys. I should probably stop ranting about how good you are but I can’t and never will.
“I looked at a selection of different sixth forms and colleges, but ultimately I felt that the teachers at the UTC were friendly, approachable and would provide me with the personalised support I needed to succeed. I am so glad that I made the choice to study here, particularly in the two years prior to moving onto higher education. Whilst studying at the UTC I have been given multiple opportunities that go above and beyond a traditional secondary curriculum to build and develop life skills. For example, last year I completed an industrial placement alongside my studies which involved spending four days a week in school and the remaining day with local engineering firm Micrometric to gain valuable work experience. This has really helped to ensure that my university application stands out from the crowd.”
Our parents say...
“ENL UTC has been the making of Izzy over the last couple of years. She was at a point where she was so frustrated with the whole education system that she was starting to suffer and I am sure this would only have gotten worse with time. Now she is the child I knew from primary school – bright and cheerful with an unending curiosity about the world around her. As well as this ENL UTC has given her a stability in what is a large part of her life at this age and this has allowed her to deal with some personal issues that were troubling her in a positive way.”
“Since my daughter joined UTC Plymouth in September 2019, she has gained in confidence and really enjoys taking part in all her lessons. Her teachers have given her amazing support and feedback about her work and she is part of the student council. In my mind it’s an amazing opportunity and such a fun family to be part of, with fantastic learning, gaining qualifications and having the knowledge that the staff are always there to help. My daughter is so lucky to have this opportunity.”
“Moving my two boys at year 10 was something I worried about a great deal however it’s the best decision I could have made. The way of teaching at the college is unique and it really works. The children are treated as young adults and teachers encourage them to think about their future and that they are the ones that need to be proactive, should they wish to succeed. Homework is not given at UTC, this doesn’t mean the children don’t home study, they choose to do it, to build on their knowledge and get the best outcome they can. They give the boys the tools and then it’s up to them to use them. As a parent I can email Mr Hamer and know he will call me back to discuss any concerns I may have. I know my children are not only being given the best education, they are also being looked after and listened to at school which is very refreshing.”
Our employers say...
“Today’s employer is looking for tomorrow’s innovation: Lincoln UTC provides an excellent opportunity for students to be prepared for that challenge, so that they can join employers such as Siemens as skilled technicians or as university graduates with a more informed understanding of business and industry in the vital fields of science and engineering”
– Nick Muntz, Managing Director, Siemens Lincoln
“I think the UTC is brilliant – there is so much technology for the students and the teachers are fantastic. They run all kinds of projects with the students, and the students get to be involved in all sorts of projects like building go karts for the Green Power challenge or entering the WorldSkills competitions. What really strikes me is that the students are so enthusiastic – it’s clear they want to be there and to learn. The students on engineering courses at the UTC really want to go into engineering and they are extremely motivated. That’s what our industry needs. We are lucky to have an apprentice working at Lavenders who completed his studies at UTC and is a real asset to the team.”
– Amy Schofield, Business Development Manager, Lavender
“We have worked alongside UTC Plymouth for a number of years, and whilst I cannot comment on how they provide educational and pastoral support for the students inside the organisation, I can comment on how impressed we have been as a local engineering employer as to the engagement and enthusiasm of the students leaving the college, and when they attend site visits here. We have taken on UTC Plymouth students to fulfil our apprenticeship placements from the college for the second year running. The students have always interviewed very well compared to students from traditional schools as they are more in tune with the practical aspects and requirements of the job and have been exposed to the manufacturing and engineering environment before.”
– Karen Friendship, Industry Partner, UTC Plymouth
“As a proud UK manufacturer, Fernite of Sheffield are big supporters of University Technical Colleges. This year we have taken on four UTC graduates in a range of apprenticeship and degree apprenticeship roles. “Technology is continuously evolving and as an advanced manufacturer we are constantly looking for new opportunities to produce highly advanced, high-quality specialist products. “However we can only take advantage of technological advances if we have the right skills in our team. That’s where working with the UTC has been invaluable. Our apprentices join the business not only with a knowledge of engineering but also a passion for it. “The UTC’s specialist engineering courses give students a hands-on education, introducing them to many of the techniques and technology used in an advanced manufacturing environment. This means our UTC graduates have been able to make a positive impact to the business from day one. “Fernite support UTC Sheffield by sponsoring the engineering prize at their annual awards ceremony, and senior managers from the business visit the college to encourage students into a career in advanced manufacturing.”
– James Kitching, Fernite
“Health Futures UTC is a school with a difference. With its clinical area, partnership links and students with a real desire and enthusiasm to learn; it is training the health workers of our future. In conjunction with Health Futures UTC we have worked closely to develop a bespoke paramedic challenge that provides the students with a working knowledge of the ambulance service and life of a paramedic through the use of real life scenarios and the equipment that might be used in an emergency. The staff are caring, hardworking and always go that extra mile to put the students first and the students are committed to learning and enriching their skills. It’s always a real pleasure to work with Health Futures and I look forward to developing the links between us even further in the future.”
– Thomas Bytheway, West Midlands Ambulance Service