Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Building Up to Become University of the Year

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Building Up to Become University of the Year

Article excerpt

THERE were fireworks over the Tees Valley after Teesside University was named University of the Year - but when you look back at its history, particularly since gaining university status in 1992 -it is not so surprising that it gained the Times Higher Education accolade. The transformation from a technical college, opened in 1930 to up-skill the workforce and serve the needs of local industry, to the strong university of today has been attracting national attention and praise, particularly for sticking to its mission of providing opportunity, promoting enterprise and enhancing the quality of its provision to students and employers. It was noticeable that Teesside not only won the top University of the Year prize, but also gained the Times Higher Education Outstanding Employer Engagement Initiative Award at last year's higher education "Oscars" -showing that it remained true to the ideals of its founding fathers while moving forward to become a dynamic and innovative university. Award judge Dianne Willcocks, Vice-Chancellor of York St John University, praised Teesside for its "history of working with communities and businesses that makes it the public benefactor par excellence and truly a well-merited winner". Times Higher editor, Ann Mroz, said: "Teesside is a fantastic example of an institution that has put itself firmly at the heart of its community, embracing with zeal its mission of working with both individuals and businesses to help them achieve their full potential. With an ambitious 16-point plan it has helped to create and sustain jobs in the midst of a recession. The university has been a beacon of hope in the region's economic gloom. It also set a fine fiscal example by turning in a strong financial performance of its own. Teesside is a very worthy winner of this year's top accolade." The university's vice-chancellor, Professor Graham Henderson, said: "Teesside is the first modern university to ever receive recognition as the University of the Year and I am sure that I speak for the whole university community -our staff, students, governors and our many partners - when I say we all feel a sense of pride and elation that our achievements have been recognised in this way. …

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