Government Ministers and MPs joined leaders from business, education and the arts yesterday in describing the University of Sunderland’s new strategic plan as bold and ambitious, during its launch in Parliament.
The new five-year plan, entitled ‘We are the tomorrow makers’, was highlighted as a great example of our how progressive universities should be positioning themselves in this challenging and fast moving global environment.
The plan was launched in London, and in Parliament in particular because it is not only relevant to the North-East but to the UK as a whole and fits comfortably with the Government’s ambitions for social mobility; its focus on skills, leadership and the creation of knowledge; the importance it places on regional anchor organisations; and its global aspirations for ‘brand UK’.
The launch was supported by a number of key speakers, including former education secretary Baroness Morris of Yardley, Arts Council England Chair and ITV Chair Sir Peter Bazelgette, ITV newsreader Alastair Stewart and Times Higher Education Editor John Gill. All highlighted the importance of universities like Sunderland to the UK’s society, economy and culture.
University of Sunderland Vice-Chancellor, Shirley Atkinson, said: “After widespread consultation, with staff, students and many of our external partners, we know we have a highly relevant set of ambitions to take us forward over the next five years. It is reassuring that yesterday we heard from people who we regard highly, not only praising the plan for its boldness and relevance, but who want to support its delivery. That gives us tremendous confidence heading into an ever challenging higher education environment.
ITV news presenter, Alastair Stewart, who has worked closely with the University, said: “This University will undoubtedly achieve its ambitions because it knows how to produce graduates who, as well as being academically equipped, are creative thinkers, problem solvers, leaders, who are aware of their environment. It is doing this already. This new Strategic Plan, which is a real statement of intent, will deliver these graduates across all sectors for many years to come.”