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Chemistry at the heart of Cumbria

Megan Winter from Broughton and Jessica Gunning from Maryport (both Applied Science students) working in the chemistry laboratories.

Recently The Northern Hub of the National College for Nuclear, based at Lakes College celebrated in style for the official opening ceremony of its state of the art chemistry laboratories which kicked off a partnership with the Royal Society of Chemistry.

The day featured a variety of speeches from influential individuals including Chris Nattress, Lakes College Principal, who gave explained the background behind the National College for Nuclear, its ever-growing curriculum offer and the possibility of opening similar colleges across the UK.

Trudi Harrison (Copeland MP) delivered an engaging and inspirational speech which emphasised how the National College for Nuclear offers students a great alternative to university. She also explained how both the National College for Nuclear, and the younger generation in the local area, are key to Cumbria being a place of world class skills.

The event’s special guest Professor David Phillips (Past President of The Royal Society of Chemistry) spoke about how proud the society are to partner with the National College for Nuclear. David highlighted the importance of vocational training and the essential link between education and industries. He recognised how great it is that the degree apprenticeships at the National College for Nuclear are carried out in partnership with industries and encouraged students who attended the ceremony to get in contact with the Royal Society of Chemistry and familiarise themselves with the registration opportunities available.

Trudi Harrison and Professor David Phillips unveiling the plaque.

Trudy Harrison and Professor David Phillips then unveiled the plaque located outside of the chemistry laboratories, making the opening official.

Guests were offered tours of the facilities in the National College for Nuclear, Alison Willetts, Curriculum Operational Leader for HE, Science and Engineering commented that “the main aim of the nuclear facility is to upskill the existing workforce, engaging with industries from the very beginning”. Visitors were shown around the college’s project room, pointing out the outstanding equipment within the multi-discipline project centre including: industrial control systems, an industrial robot and electrical power systems. The project room is multi-functional so has engineering, electrical, mechanical, control and automation system students working within it.

The ceremony was also well attended by employers that the college works closely including representatives from: Energus, Jacobs, Sellafield and West Lakes Academy.

Trudy Harrison complimented the ceremony, she said: “The government has invested 7.5 million pounds into an incredible value, state of the art facility, which has trainers with an industry background meaning thousands in the local area will benefit as a result. The campus offers a wide variety of subjects and the opening of the cutting-edge chemistry laboratories further enhances the offer available to both local students and students from further afield.”

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