Strategic agreement further strengthens links between industry and academia in Lancashire
UCLan and BAE Systems pledge to accelerate pace of technology development
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BAE Systems enabling further collaboration on a range of business innovation initiatives to support Lancashire enterprises and the development of entrepreneurship training.
The MoU supports both parties’ ambitions to accelerate the pace of technology development by harnessing each other’s skills, facilities and connections as part of the process. It recognises the importance of the region in developing the skills and technologies that help Lancashire retain and grow its reputation as a technology provider and create regional prosperity.
The MoU is helping to create new opportunities between the organisations. The Creative Innovation Zone at UCLan is a leading example in the development and delivery of innovative business thinking. As a result of close working, BAE Systems is sharing best practice and adopting the University’s approach to innovation training in the development and trialling of a new entrepreneurship programme for employees. As the pace of technological development is changing the way sophisticated combat air systems are designed, built and maintained, this requires new skills and training processes for the combat air industry.
"Our University is passionate about helping to level up the north and this exciting partnership with BAE Systems will help accelerate economic growth for the region through innovation, enterprise and knowledge exchange activities."— UCLan Vice-Chancellor Professor Graham Baldwin
In a reciprocal visit to the BAE Systems Academy for Skills and Knowledge (ASK) at Samlesbury, staff from the University experienced a live demonstration of the company’s Virtual Reality classroom, a facility used as a virtual training environment for future engineers. It has the potential to be used by the University as a highly sophisticated simulation facility to support the University’s specialist drone technology research programme.
Commenting on the signing of the MoU UCLan’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Graham Baldwin said: “Our University is passionate about helping to level up the north and this exciting partnership with BAE Systems will help accelerate economic growth for the region through innovation, enterprise and knowledge exchange activities. It will also provide our students with real-world learning opportunities to enhance their knowledge and develop their future careers.”
"Working together we can help to guide each other by sharing best practice, research and experience that will keep us at the forefront of technology ..."— Dave Holmes, Advanced Projects, Technology & Manufacturing Director, BAE Systems
Dave Holmes, Advanced Projects, Technology & Manufacturing Director, BAE Systems, said “We’re delighted to be deepening our collaboration with UCLan to help us drive a critically important skills and technology agenda within the region. Working together we can help to guide each other by sharing best practice, research and experience that will keep us at the forefront of technology, something that we have a shared interest in delivering as we design the UK’s future combat air systems.”
BAE Systems employs almost 10,000 people in the Lancashire region alone. Working in collaboration with UCLan forms part of a wider strategy to work with leading academic organisations to develop innovative and sustainable technologies which will help to support customers today and tomorrow.
UCLan is Lancashire’s largest provider of graduate level qualifications with world-leading or internationally excellent work taking place across its research portfolio.
As a key economic anchor for the region, UCLan is the top university in the north of England and fifth in the UK for supporting start-up businesses*.