£10m science & technology teaching centre set for University of Essex’s Colchester campus

Professor Graham Underwood, executive dean for science and health at the University of Essex

Professor Graham Underwood, executive dean for science and health at the University of Essex - Credit: Archant

A new state-of-the-art maths, science and engineering teaching centre is set to be built at the University of Essex Wivenhoe campus after the institution was awarded £5million of funding.

The university will match fund the grant from the Higher Education Funding Council for England, part of a £200m package of money to develop STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) provision at universities across the country, to create a “science square”.

Detailed plans are now being developed with work due to start in 2016 and the new centre set to be completed by September 2017 provided it gets planning permission.

Professor Graham Underwood, executive dean for science and health at the university, said: “This significant investment in STEM will ensure we continue to provide all our students with the skills and knowledge necessary to enable them to be successful graduates of this university.

“This award is clear recognition of the exciting and innovative undergraduate and postgraduate education we offer across the STEM disciplines at the university.

“The new teaching centre will enhance our provision of high quality laboratory and IT learning spaces, and will also support developments in interdisciplinary teaching.

“This supports our investment in science and health at Essex which is part of our wider vision to drive the ideas economy in Essex and the eastern region.

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“We are creating an exciting technology cluster and SME hot-spot at the Knowledge Gateway research and enterprise park with businesses already moving onto our Parkside Office Village. These new facilities for our students will help to ensure our graduates have every opportunity to develop the highly sought after skills businesses are looking for, skills which are so vital in helping companies grow and find new opportunities.

“The new building also offers more opportunities to engage with businesses and external organisations in new ways to enrich the educational experience for our students. We are always keen to hear from businesses who want to work with us.”

The plans come as the new £21m building for the Essex Business School is set to open next year.

Anglia Ruskin University has also been awarded £5m which will be spent developing its life sciences and technology college at its Cambridge campus, while University Campus Suffolk has been awarded £352,578.

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