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Dorset University Partnership

The Dorset University Partnership (DUP) has drawn up ambitious plans to bring enhanced higher education to Dorset, boost the county's economy and support local businesses.

Dorset County Council, Kingston Maurward College (opens in a new window) Weymouth College (opens in a new window) and University of the West of England (opens in a new window)(UWE) have joined together to bid for Government funding to provide more higher education opportunities across the county.

The Government wants to set up 20 new higher education centres across the country in areas where no or little higher education currently exists.

In Dorset, there is limited university provision and it is not evenly spread across the county, so courses cannot easily be accessed by everyone. Currently, the proportion of working people in the county with degrees and higher qualifications is below the national average.

The DUP has submitted a proposal that would offer 500 new places a year . If the bid is successful, a range of degrees and higher qualifications would be on offer.

Dorset University Partnership bid (pdf, 234kb) (opens in a new window)

Dorset University Partnership bid appendix - this is a large document and may take some time to open (pdf, 2Mb) (opens in a new window)

Courses would be delivered at a number of locations across Dorset through classroom teaching, online learning and work-based study, with qualifications awarded by UWE.

Initially, the partnership anticipates their potential students will be:

  • young people who went to college or sixth-form but can't afford to move away
  • those who missed out on the opportunity for higher education earlier in their lives
  • those in employment who want to improve their skill set

As well as bringing more higher education opportunities to the county, this enhanced provision could help local businesses develop and boost Dorset's economy.

The DUP is waiting to hear if its bid has been successful.

  • Working online Working with local businesses

    The Dorset University Partnership (DUP) firmly believes in linking learning with employment, and this is at the heart of our proposals. Together with businesses, we would like to develop local, flexible, work-based learning programmes that give people the core skills businesses need.

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