Redcar & Cleveland College’s £26m new campus received a Royal seal of approval today (Thursday 12th February), when the Duke of York, HRH Prince Andrew, visited to officially open the building.
Whilst on site the he took a tour of the college, visiting the college’s industry leading gas assessment centre and dropped in on a class of engineering students studying for a HNC in Chemical Engineering who were running chemical process simulations in one of the college’s high-tech IT Labs.
The Chemical Engineering course gives students a grounding in the principals and processes involved in working in the chemical industry and builds upon the college’s strong relationship with the National Skills Academy for the Process Industry based at Wilton.
The Prince, a former serving member of the Royal Navy, also met with students studying the Uniformed Services Pre-Entry course who were carrying out a series of command exercises in the college’s sports hall, before joining in a discussion centring on the topic of citizenship.
The courses give young people who are thinking about going on to join the Armed or Emergency Services an insight into and a taste of life in these Services. Students go on to careers in the military and emergency services – in particular the army and police.
He rounded off the visit by unveiling a plaque to mark the official opening of the new campus in the college’s atrium in front of hundreds of college staff and students.
Gary Groom, Principal of Redcar & Cleveland College said:
“We are honoured that His Royal Highness is able to be with us here today to open the new Redcar & Cleveland College Campus. The new campus stands as a beacon of vocational learning in the Tees Valley and has already raised the aspirations of the thousands of students who have passed through the doors since the college first opened in September 2008.
"Staff, students and visitors all say how much they love the new building which has exceeded all expectations, there is a palpable sense of pride in the college and the wider community.
“Much of what has been focused upon today reflects the college’s excellent provision with a particular focus on its strengths in engineering and the built environment. The Duke has a particular interest in the process industries as we know from his recent visit to the Wilton site and he was particularly impressed by the work that our Chemical Engineering students were doing on process simulation.”
Jon Nixon who is studying the Chemical Engineering course said:
“Meeting the Duke was an honour and it is great that he has such a keen interest in the process industries and in particular the local industry here on Teesside.
“He has a real interest in the chemical and process industries which was evident in the kinds of questions he was asking about the simulations we were running when he visited our class.”
Dr Graham Hillier, College Chair of Governors at Redcar & Cleveland College, said:
"We are delighted and grateful to be celebrating here today with His Royal Highness, which recognises the journey that has been undertaken by the College and its staff to reach this point.
"With tremendous effort by all of the staff the College has seen its success rates rise every year over the last four years, this achievement is now culminated by the opening of a new campus which embodies and represents the true brand value of what is the all new Redcar & Cleveland College."
More photos can be viewed via this link: