Northern Lights:Â A world of choice attracts students to university '˜woven into city fabric'
It's that time of year again. Over the past few weeks, something over 60,000 students have arrivedÂ in Sheffield, drawn here by the city's two universities. They come from all schools and collegesÂ across the United Kingdom, and from all over the world, students drawn to the city by the reputation and strengths of the two great universities. All have made a positive choice to come toÂ Sheffield to study. For our international students, they have chosen to study in this city, in one of theÂ city's two universities from, literally, a worldwide choice '“ they could have gone anywhere.
But a good number of students at both our universities come from this city and this region. The cityÂ and the region are deep in the DNA of the two universities. Sheffield Hallam is a great regionalÂ university. Almost half of our students come from within 25 miles of the University, many from areasÂ with traditionally low numbers of young people entering higher education. We know we are a majorÂ creator of opportunities for them.
Two fifths of our students come from low income backgrounds, and we believe it is a powerful partÂ of our mission to work with them to create opportunities. Last year, Sheffield Hallam admitted moreÂ students from low participation neighbourhoods than any other university '“ we are proud of theÂ part we play in building opportunities for all. All successful universities grew out of their cities andÂ communities and the vast majority of truly successful universities see that it is a critical part of theirÂ role to play a regional and civic role.
We are, as a university, at the heart of this region '“ and we take great pride in being a university forÂ the region and are determined to support our community to make the improvements we all need.
Our '˜Heart of the Region' campaign aims to highlight what we do to support this ambition, but it alsoÂ outlines our plans to benefit the region even further.
Sheffield Hallam is a major driver of the economy, adding over Â£420m a year to the city region'sÂ economy, generating almost Â£80m in tax receipts and supporting almost 10,000 jobs. Without theÂ contribution of the university, the region would, literally, be poorer.
We work closely with industry and businesses to create the workforce of the future, ensuring that itÂ is equipped to meet and respond to future challenges. We do that through our research andÂ innovation, in our hugely successful programme of degree apprenticeships '“ one of the biggest
'˜learn and earn' programmes in the country - and through over 25,000 student placements withÂ employers, the overwhelming majority of them in the city region. From advanced gaming toÂ materials science, from cyber-security to building design, from healthcare to teacher education,
from rail engineering to advanced food technology the university is a proud innovator, workingÂ closely with the city region.
We are improving education through our ground-breaking social mobility partnership SouthÂ Yorkshire Futures. Backed by our elected mayor Dan Jarvis MP and the Government, it aims toÂ improve attainment and raise aspiration for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds across all age groups.
Sheffield Hallam is one of the country's largest centres for healthcare education in the country: weÂ provide more new members of the NHS workforce than any other English university. But ourÂ regional role in healthcare education is critical.
Over the last five years, over 8,000 studentsÂ qualified as health professionals through their training at Sheffield Hallam and a large majority wentÂ on to work in the hospitals, surgeries and clinics of the region as nurses, midwives, radiographersÂ and so on. Their training is underpinned by some of the best healthcare training facilities in theÂ country, and by research at the cutting edge of health and social care.
Apart from improving social mobility, quality of life and the economy, we provide the spark to createÂ a whole host of new cultural opportunities. Our refurbishment of the city's Head Post Office createdÂ a gallery space for the city, fronting Fitzalan Square and now driving wider regeneration in that partÂ of Sheffield, and our exhibitions and galleries welcome visitors, including large numbers ofÂ schoolchildren each year. Earlier this year we added Sheffield's newest performance and rehearsalÂ space to our estate '“ the Performance Lab on Arundel Gate, which extends the region's range ofÂ cultural resources.
Our university's foundations can be traced back to the nineteenth century Industrial Revolution '“Â with the opening of the Sheffield School of Design, which produced skilled designers who wereÂ integral to the success of local manufacturers and industry. Today Sheffield Hallam is proud toÂ remain at the heart of the region, woven into the fabric and culture of Sheffield and the surroundingÂ area, vital to its success.