FORTH Valley College has become the first learning institution in Scotland to achieve STEM Assured, the industry-led quality mark for STEM training awarded by the National Engineering Foundation (NEF).
The prestigious standard recognises excellence in STEM (Science, Engineering, Technology and Maths) provision within the Further Education sector, with a particular focus on an interdisciplinary approach and meeting the needs of business and industry.
The NEF set rigorous criteria which assess an organisations’ performance in six key areas including strategy and planning, engagement, design and delivery, innovation, standards and impact.
Says a spokesperson: “An independent validation was carried out which verified that Forth Valley College was performing well in all areas.
“The standard demonstrates the college’s commitment to delivering high-quality, innovative provision which benefits both individual learners and industry partners.
“Forth Valley College already has a strong focus on delivering courses which provide learners with the knowledge and skills required by employers ensuring they are ‘work ready’ and the STEM Assurance will further validate this.
“A high level of cross curricular activity also offers increased scope for innovation and boosts the ability to offer STEM training reflecting real and relevant applications in today’s world.
“Employer engagement is also key to driving the STEM curriculum forward and the college will continue to work with a range of industry partners to create ground-breaking tailored training solutions.”
The NEF’s Dr Fallyn Campbell said: “Forth Valley’s submission was very strong with evidence of well-embedded good practice.
“The college has a strong strategic commitment to STEM with very high levels of employer and learner satisfaction. We were particularly impressed with its Energising Skills Group which is ensuring a genuine dialogue with employers and measuring the impact of training on business performance.
“The college also engages well with local schools, and its work is fostering ambition for careers in STEM industries, for example setting real-life industrial problems as project briefs.”
Linda McKay, principal for Forth Valley College, said: “We already have an excellent track record for delivering forward thinking education and training for the science and technology industries and we’re delighted to be the first further education organisation in Scotland to receive the nationally recognised STEM Assurance.
“The robust validation process offers an excellent way to benchmark the quality of the provision we offer and confirmed we have a clear and comprehensive STEM strategy.
“STEM subjects are increasingly important as technology evolves and they will play a vital part of the future.
“We will continue to develop our curriculum and facilities to ensure we remain at the cutting edge of STEM education and training.
“Our STEM Assurance demonstrates our commitment to this.”
Notes to Editors:
STEM Assured is an UK-wide quality standard recognised by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) and The National Apprenticeship Service (NAS). The award reflects a college’s determination to be at the forefront of STEM Provision and meet the needs of local and regional employers.
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