9 December 2020
New Model Institute for Technology and Engineering Opens

As readers will know, ever since I first called for a university in Herefordshire in 2008, I have been working to make it happen.

So, a mere twelve years of campaigning, lobbying, twisting arms, fundraising and making the case later, you can imagine my joy last week at the news that NMITE—our own New Model Institute for Technology and Engineering—has finally opened, offering degrees validated by the Open University.

From March 2021, students will be able to study for a Masters or MEng in Integrated Engineering, do it in three years rather than the usual four. The starting intake will get their first year of tuition paid for under an NMITE Founders bursary scheme. And end up with a superb Open University degree at the end! That's quite a combination.

And you don't need an A level in maths or the sciences. NMITE is looking for future engineers with great values; young people who are passionate, curious, resilient and creative.

But what may not be so clear is the fantastic opportunities that NMITE will offer to the city and the county. Our young people are the great engineers and technologists of the future, and now they have the chance to go to the UK's most innovative higher education institution, right on their doorstep.

Student learning at NMITE is based on the best international models, notably Olin College in the United States, launched in 1997. In 2018 an MIT study ranked Olin alongside the hallowed MIT as a world leader in engineering education, just 21 years after it was first established.

But there are also superb opportunities here for local businesses. At NMITE, students will be working intensively in small groups on practical tech and engineering projects, learning the theory as they go. It is learning-by-doing. That means a need for a constant stream of engineering and design projects that the students can get their teeth into.

Let's be clear: it will not all be plain sailing. This is a new enterprise, and there are bound to be bumps along the way. We will need all the resources and energy of the county to pull this off. 

But if you are a student or a small engineering business and you want to be part of this amazing story, then please go to www.nmite.ac.uk and get in touch; or drop me a line. You will be making history.