The college has developed the forum in response to an
announcement from the Government's Business Innovation and Skills
(BIS) department that came in July and said the North East Local
Enterprise Partnership (NELEP) is to become one of three regional
pilots that will see significant funds for skills allocated to LEPs
with the aim of fostering greater relations between private and
public sector employers and education and training providers.
Lord Curry, keynote speaker and influential rural business
leader said: "It is critical that we build momentum around the
economy here in the North East and forums like this can play an
important part in encouraging key players to work together."
The forum's launch also follows the NELEP's independent review
of the North East published in April and led by Lord Adonis, former
Secretary of State for Transport and Minister for Schools. This
review praised the creation of the Combined Authority that sees the
seven local authorities in the region collaborating to tackle key
The forum welcomes members from the business community and
education and training organisations and it is hoped sub groups
with specialism in particular sectors will become established to
develop new and innovative ways of working.
Today's launch event was chaired by Jacqui Henderson - Chair of
Governors at the college and included speeches from Steve Stewart,
Chief Executive of Northumberland County Council who delivered
Northumberland's skills strategy and Andrew Hodgson of the North
East Local Enterprise Partnership who outlined regional skills
Stuart Cutforth, Principal and Chief Executive at Northumberland
College, said: "As a college we are mindful of local labour markets
when we create our curriculum programmes. And we share the aims of
the NELEP review, which include achieving more jobs for the people
of the region, increasing Apprenticeship opportunities and the
proportion of people going into higher education.
"We want our students to succeed and develop in sustained
employment. This forum aims to benefit our students and the local
economy by matching training provision with local skills
Northumberland College is the largest training provider in
Northumberland, offers over 40 flexible Apprenticeship frameworks
and works with over 700 businesses across the North East.
Anyone wishing to find out more about the Northumberland College
Employment and Skills Forum or who would like to become a member
should visit www.northumberland.ac.uk