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Innovation Foundation Degree at New College Durham

Being at the forefront of new technologies through innovative new companies is something that this region is exceptional at. When an organisation starts out in its business life there is plenty of support to help them take those first initial steps.

But continuing growth beyond the capabilities of the initial entrepreneurs requires access to a workforce who can not only perform the tasks required of them, but can also contribute to that culture of innovation to ensure the business thrives.
New College Durham has been asked to introduce the theme of innovation into the college higher education curriculum. The aim of the project is to equip graduates with the knowledge and skills of innovation and idea generation to meet employers' needs and maintain innovative business growth in County Durham.

A foundation degree module has been created by the college in partnership with Business Durham. This module can either be embedded in foundation degree programmes or be used to modify current course modules to focus on innovation.

To facilitate the implementation of innovation into the higher education curriculum, New College Durham have assigned four experienced lecturing practitioners to the role of College Staff Innovation Champions:

                • Neil White, Business, Leadership and Management
                • Sean King, Business Computing and Networking
                • Craig Bates, Public and Community Services
                • Jo Thomas, Health and Social Care

The College Staff Innovation Champions have visited NetPark to consult with business leaders and are currently working with Business Durham on a series of innovation projects and ideas.

As part of the growing and close working relationship between the College and Business Durham, Mo Dixon, Assistant Principal, has been appointed as a NetPark Ambassador and will help represent the innovative work and development of the NetPark both nationally and internationally.

Project Timeline

Foundation Degree in Business, Enterprise and Entrepreneurship at Newcastle College

The project is designed to meet employer demand from regional start-ups and SMEs to strengthen their capacity for entrepreneurship, leadership and management, and supporting further business growth.

The project will engage with the regional Federation of Small Business (FSB) which currently serves a network of over 2,500 SMEs across the North East.

The project will explore the potential for an accelerated Foundation Degree in Business, Enterprise and Entrepreneurship revising the current 2 year delivery model to a 12 month delivery model.

SMEs have highlighted specific needs around leadership, people management, accountancy and project management, therefore an innovative flexible delivery model will provide the opportunity for bespoke options including ILM, CIPD, AAT and Prince2 certifications, among others.

Regional SMEs will be invited to attend roundtable events looking to shape the programme outcomes through discussion around skills gaps. Further feedback will be gathered through FSB events which will support the future development of the programme.

Entrepreneurship Timeline

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