New university on track for 2007 opening
THE new boss of Suffolk's first university said last night the venture remained on course to welcome students in 2007. Professor Bob Anderson has been appointed Chief Executive of University Campus Suffolk and will lead the project, which includes the development of a new campus on Ipswich Waterfront, from January.
By Danielle Nuttall
THE new boss of Suffolk's first university said last night the venture remained on course to welcome students in 2007.
Professor Bob Anderson has been appointed Chief Executive of University Campus Suffolk and will lead the project, which includes the development of a new campus on Ipswich Waterfront, from January.
The 59-year-old grandfather of three, who lives in Suffolk, is joining UC Suffolk from Sheffield Hallam University, where he was Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Business Development.
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Speaking from his home last night, Prof Anderson said the first students would arrive in September 2007, while the new campus would open a year later.
“We will open the new facilities in 2008. From the students perspective, in the first year of operation there will be no change.
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“They will be utilising the facilities at Suffolk College and the following year they will move across to the new facilities,” said Prof Anderson.
“All of the main stakeholders are very, very positive and the two universities are working together in such a way that no other two universities have before.
“The whole network of colleges across Suffolk will be part of this. There are going to be some bumps on the way but I'm positive we will be successful.”
The UC Suffolk project is a collaboration between the University of Essex and the University of East Anglia and has received funding support from the Higher Education Funding Council for England, the East of England Development Agency, Suffolk County Council and Ipswich Borough Council.
The first phase includes a £106m investment in a landmark development on the Ipswich Waterfront providing dedicated university facilities and a county-wide learning network.
Prof Anderson said the county as a whole would reap huge dividends thanks to the new university.
“The work we have done anticipates a £50m gain per annum. That's for Suffolk as a whole,” he said.
“Secondly, there is a cultural development. Suffolk as a county is under performing in terms of higher education. In part that's an aspiration and cultural thing.
“We have to have a beacon here to allow people who wouldn't have aspired to university to take up those advantages. We can raise aspirations.”
Professor David Eastwood, Vice-Chancellor of the University of East Anglia and Chair of the UC
Suffolk board, said: “All the partners in the project are delighted to appoint Professor Anderson to this important post.
“He is a highly successful business manager with a strong academic track record and will bring vision, energy and commitment to the project as we move into the implementation phase.”
Professor Dave Muller, Principal of Suffolk College, one of the project partners, added: “In Bob Anderson, we have appointed someone with the know-how and the drive to make things happen.
“This is a very important step in the development of higher education provision in Suffolk, and I am sure he will have the full support of his future staff at Suffolk College.”