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The Edge Grant Fund

This new programme of grant funding will run biennially, starting in 2016 when there will be one million pounds available.

Applications for 2016 are now closed. Successful applications will be announced in the spring but all applications will support Edge’s Strategic Priorities and address at least two of the following five funding themes:

  • Improve the design and delivery of Information, Advice and Guidance
  • Support the development of profound employer engagement
  • Support the development of blended academic, technical and professional learning as part of the 14-19 curriculum
  • Support the development of high quality apprenticeships
  • Address areas of skills shortages for the UK economy.

The following eleven projects received funding from previous Edge grants. We have produced, with colleagues at NfER, a guide on How to deliver an effective grant-funded project on technical and professional education which draws on all of their work. This will be useful for anyone planning or running a project in this area, whether funded by Edge or another organisation. You can download a copy here

Activate Learning – A School of Construction is set to open at City of Oxford College. It will offer project based learning in conjunction with a number of high profile employers such as Land Securities and Skansa.

Ayrshire College – A Skills Centre of Excellence situated at Irvine Royal Academy has opened offering secondary school pupils access to courses usually only available at FE colleges. In 2014/15 nearly 300 students took courses in sports management, health and care, and hospitality.

Siemens Mechatronics Academy at Barking & Dagenham College – The state of the art equipment within the academy continues to enrich the education of students and apprentices. The academy is also a popular venue for the college’s school and employer engagement activities.

Regional Automotive Technology Hub at Blackburn College – Students are benefitting from the college’s Independent Garage Network as well as its partnership with three main dealers: Simpsons Skoda, Chorley Nissan and Bowker BMW. This employer engagement is providing students with scholarships, learning sessions with Master Technicians and cutting edge facilities.

Career Ready UK (formerly Career Academies UK) – Five centres focusing on the wide ranging career paths available in the logistics sector have been established. A programme of Think Logistics workshops is also underway. Career Ready has also gained a great deal of financial and in-kind support from the industry, including from the Freight Transport Association.

Coleg y Cymoedd – The college officially opened its Centre for Excellence in Railway Training in September 2015. Four cohorts of apprentices have enrolled and are enjoying the outstanding facilities.

The Eden Project – Eden welcomed its first undergraduates in September 2015. It is now officially a university campus with students studying horticulture and event management, including 35 apprentices on site. Eden has plans to further develop its degree oering and extend on site facilities.

Hackney Community College – The college has built an impressive network of employer contacts and has placed its first six apprentices with BT Sport and seven more with digital businesses in the area.

Sir Frank Whittle Studio School – The newly built logistics centre opened in 2015. An impressive number of employer partners, including ASDA and CEVA Logistics, are supporting this initiative resulting in almost 18,500 hours of work experience and work placements being oered to students. The school is also carrying out logistics based careers activities with local primary schools.

Oldham College – The Digital and Creative Skills faculty at Oldham College opened in the newly built Digital Skills Centre. Students benefit from project based learning in conjunction with a number of employers. As well as guiding the curriculum, the strong employer partnership work provides students with meaningful work experience placements, industry visits and masterclasses.

PROCAT’s Careers Academy for Railway Engineering and Aviation – The academy has worked with 21 schools allowing young people access to hands on experience of the rail and aviation industries. Strong employer led Sector Advisory Boards ensure the curriculum oer at Procat is relevant.