Press Releases week beginning 07 March 2016
University of Brighton
Response from Cllr Peter Chowney, the leader of Hastings Borough Council, to the statement from the University of Brighton regarding its future in the town :
"If Brighton University are indeed closing their Hastings centre, it's a devastating blow to the town's regeneration, especially considering the amount of public money that went into creating a university centre here. But this must not be the end of a university in Hastings. We will be looking to Brighton University to co-operate with us and Sussex Coast College not just to retain some higher education in Hastings, but to create a genuine University of Hastings. Hastings has become a university town. It must remain a university town. I'm determined to work with Sussex Coast College, Brighton University, local businesses, our MP, other universities, and anyone else who wants to contribute, to help us achieve that."
For information, the University of Brighton's news release read as follows :-
University of Brighton will continue to support higher education in Hastings
The University of Brighton today confirmed that it will continue to support the delivery of higher education in Hastings through an evolution of its current provision in the town.
The announcement follows an internal review which considered a wide range of possible options. The review found that:
- Whilst the current model for higher education provision has been successful in opening up higher education opportunities in the town, it is not sustainable in the longer term
- A predicted sharp fall in the number of 16-17 year olds in the town and surrounding areas mirrors a similar trend across the rest of the UK
- This is resulting in increased competition for students both nationally and internationally
- Any future investment in Hastings by the University needs to take into account not only its impact on the town and surrounding area, but also the University's wider strategic priorities, future sustainability and growth
As a result of the review the University Management Board recommended that the University should continue to support the delivery of a more focused higher education offering in the town targeting the local community. This could be delivered through a broadening and deepening of its relationship with Sussex Coast College Hastings.
This recommendation was endorsed by the University's Board of Governors who resolved that the University evolve a new model of provision in Hastings as part of its strategic development. The objective is to develop this model working with local partners, employers and Sussex Coast College Hastings.
Vice-Chancellor Professor Debra Humphris said: "I am pleased that the University of Brighton will continue to play an important role in the continuing social and economic regeneration of Hastings.
"The evolution of our higher education provision in the town, in partnership with SCCH and other partners, will provide a more sustainable basis on which to continue to build on the successes of our students and staff in Hastings over the past decade.
"There are many great examples of this revised model across the country and we will look to learn from them. I look forward to engaging with our partners, stakeholders, staff and students in Hastings as we develop and roll-out the new model for future provision."