Pictured at the official opening of North West Regional College's redeveloped Springtown campus. Photo: Martin McKeown
Derry-based North West Regional College (NWRC) has officially opened its refurbished campus based at Springtown in the city.
The campus was opened by NWRC’s principal and chief executive, Leo Murphy, and Heather Cousins, head of the skills and education group, Department for the Economy, who unveiled a commemorative plaque to mark the occasion.
Springtown campus, which is soon to celebrate its 50th anniversary, has recently undergone a multi-million pound refurbishment as part of a wider £10.8m Estates Improvement Programme across NWRC, fully funded by the Department for the Economy.
The campus has been transformed with new workshops for each vocational area, fitted with the latest technology and equipment that provide an enhanced learner experience.
Other developments include new Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology in both engineering and construction; robotic welding capability, electric vehicle training rigs and charging stations, electrical testing and inspection rigs and much more.
The redevelopment has also allowed the campus to diversify and expand its range of courses. For the first time, Springtown will offer a range of sport and fitness courses in addition to sports courses already offered at the college’s Strand Road campus, as well as providing extra workspace for NWRC’s award-winning Business Support Centre.
Mr Murphy said: “On behalf of the governing body, management, and staff of the College, I am delighted to officially open our redeveloped industrial training facility at Springtown.
“My thanks to the Department for the Economy for its support and capital investment in this significant development for North West Regional College.
“NWRC has a long tradition in developing the careers in traditional crafts and skills, forging strong partnerships with local schools, groups, and industry. But despite our rich history, we continue to be forward thinkers as we continually develop our curriculum, responding to the demands of industry and the ever-changing world of technology.
“Completion of this project is a positive result for the development of industrial apprenticeships in the college, city, and region.
"The work at Springtown is a huge step forward and everyone at the College is enthusiastic about our new and modern estate, which has a fresh and vibrant appeal. It is not only fit for purpose, but it also meets the needs and expectations of students and employers alike.”
Acting chair of NWRC’s governing body, Gavin Killeen, said: “It is wonderful to be here today to see the Springtown campus, which has for many years provided quality training through generations, transformed. Congratulations to all the staff and the College’s Estates team for their work on this project.”
Springtown campus, which is one of NWRC’s five main campuses, first opened in the 1970s as a government training centre.
It is home to the highest quality, industry-standard training facilities, for ‘in demand’ skills across Northern Ireland. They include: electrical installation, fabrication and welding, mechanical engineering, motor vehicle repair, light vehicle body repair, plumbing, carpentry and Joinery, bricklaying, wall and floor tiling, painting and decorating, horticulture, and renewables.
The College has achieved huge success at Worldskills (Skills Olympics) and many students have gone on to compete in the World finals, travelling across the globe to compete.
With courses available for school leavers and adult learners, Springtown has a wide range of courses to support students achieve their career ambitions.
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