The University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales, Newport have begun exclusive talks aimed at integrating the two institutions and realising their shared vision for a new University that would provide greater depth of support to the students, communities and economy of South Wales.
The ambitious plans for the new institution will build on the strengths and resources of the two universities and maximise the opportunities for learners via the partners’ campuses across the cities of Cardiff and Newport and throughout the valleys of South East Wales.
The purpose of the new university will be to achieve a step-change in the ability to compete in the UK and international markets, provide more opportunities for students and provide an economic boost to the public and private sectors in the region by emphasising skills, employability and entrepreneurship.
It will be of a similar size to Cardiff University, with an enhanced applied research capacity and a focus on business engagement and employability, while improving widening access opportunities for local learners.
Governors and senior managers from both institutions will now work together to develop a detailed plan that will form the blueprint for the new university – the new name of which will form part of the discussions.
They will aim to build on the close partnership between the two institutions that has developed from their work with UHOVI (Universities Heads of the Valleys Institute). The formation of the new University will be guided by the principle of creating a beacon institution for Wales which is integrated into local communities, for the benefit of students and the economy.
While the current process involves a bilateral agreement between Glamorgan and Newport, the new institution, when established, will be designed to remain open for further expansion with potential partners in the future.
Andrew Wilkinson, Chair of the Board of Governors at the University of Wales Newport, said: “The governors of the University of Wales, Newport welcome this development as both institutions seek to build on their respective strengths to develop a new, entrepreneurial model of higher education across South Wales. Our guiding aim is to build a new institution which will create a step-change in HE provision and will have a far greater impact on the region than the sum of its parts.”
Professor John Andrews, Chair of the University of Glamorgan’s Board of Governors, said “With the major investments both universities have made in recent times to provide the best possible experience for our students, this is a good time for us to further develop the scale and range of our combined higher education offer across South Wales to become an institution that can compete not only in the UK but on a global basis.”