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Student confidence runs high at UTCs, survey shows

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Almost nine out of 10 students who attend University Technical Colleges (87 per cent) feel confident in their ability to succeed in work, according to a new survey.

The survey of 850 14-18 year old students of UTCs across England, conducted in June, also reveals 86 per cent are confident of getting a job that suits their skills when they leave education.

UTCs are technical secondary schools for 14-18 year olds that offer a broad curriculum combining academic education with technical and practical learning.

Some 39 of the institutions have opened to date, and their number to will rise to 55 by 2017, eventually offering places for more than 37,000 students. 

The survey shows nearly three quarters (70 per cent) of current UTC students feel their prospects are better than if they had stayed in a mainstream school.

Two-thirds (68 per cent) say they already know the career they want, while 40 per cent plan to go to university and around a quarter (26 per cent) plan to do an apprenticeship.

The difference was most stark when comparing links to businesses (85 per cent said they were better) and specialist equipment (86 per cent said it was better).

The results of the survey will come as a much-needed boost to the UTC programme as two – Hackney UTC and Black Country UTC – close from tomorrow.

Lord Baker, Chairman of Baker Dearing Educational Trust, the charity behind UTCs, said: “These findings confirm that students who attend University Technical Colleges are gaining an education that gives them greater confidence in finding a job, one that suits their skills and pays well.

“Although it is still early days, UTCs are already playing an important role in helping to train and nurture a future workforce of highly-skilled technicians, scientists and engineers.”

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