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GC Principal meets with MP Alex Chalk to discuss innovative cyber development plans

19 February 2019

From left to right: Andy Bates, MP Alex Chalk and Matthew Burgess


Our Principal Matthew Burgess and Chief Financial Officer Andy Bates met with Cheltenham MP Alex Chalk to update him on the College’s cyber and technical ambitions. The College plans to create new higher level digital education and training opportunities for students and employers.

Their meeting, held at Gloucestershire College’s Cheltenham campus, focused on the College’s recent shortlist by the Department for Education for its Institute of Technology Bid. Gloucestershire College is a key partner in this strategic regional partnership with FE and HE institutions in the South West, including UWE (University of the West of England), and Weston College. The Institute of Technology will work with major local employers including GE Aviation and Renishaw, bringing together industry, education and research to design and deliver flexible higher level technical provision across multiple sectors. Teaching will be delivered through first class, cutting edge facilities and via a virtual learning environment.

Gloucestershire College Principal Matthew Burgess says, “We are delighted to be shortlisted for the prestigious Institute of Technology bid, which will enable us to equip local students and employees with the skills to fully exploit new technologies and digital innovation. This will not only increase productivity and job opportunities, but also support Gloucestershire’s continued growth as a region of excellence for cyber and technology.”

Indeed the College’s ambitions to develop its digital offering work hand in hand with the new proposed Cheltenham Cyber Business Park, to be built close to GCHQ, the College’s neighbour. MP Alex Chalk is a long standing advocate of the new cyber park and is passionate about establishing Cheltenham as a cyber-tech hub. 

Alex Chalk comments, “I’m enthused to hear how Gloucestershire College plans to build on its well established education, training and apprenticeship provision. It embraces my own vision for the Cheltenham Cyber Business Park to define our region as a leader in digital innovation, and integral to future economic growth across all industry sectors. I’m delighted with Gloucestershire College’s ongoing support and commitment to the Cheltenham Cyber Business Park.”

Matthew Burgess adds, “Our cyber ambitions via the Institute of Technology will open up higher education options for local students, employees and employers. In particular it will offer training and learning opportunities for local students who may not currently be considering higher level education as an option. Our bid will not only enhance our digital education provision but is committed to widening participation across the county, and alongside the development of the Cheltenham Cyber Business Park, will grow and protect Gloucestershire’s future talent pipeline.”


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90% of students would recommend GC and 95% said that the teaching on their course was good.

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