WATCH: Councillors go on building tour of new technical college

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THE head of a new technical college has told of his excitement at taking on the role.

The University Technical College (UTC) in Hilsea is due to open its doors in September.

The state-funded college will specialise in electrical and mechanical engineering, and advanced manufacturing.

And the 75 Year 10 and 100 Year 12 pupils who are given a place will be led by newly-appointed principal Ciaran O’Dowda.

He said: ‘Building started in August 2016 and since then we’ve come a long way, quickly.

‘Eventually the college will have 600 students, and specialist workshops, classrooms and laboratories.

‘The outside structure is nearly finished, and then the final internal work can be completed.

‘This week I’m working on choosing the fixtures and fittings.

‘I’m very excited about this whole project.

‘We’ve had a huge number of applications so far.’

Portsmouth City Council leader councillor Donna Jones joined Mr O’Dowda for a tour yesterday.

She said: ‘It’s fantastic that in just one year a brand new college will have been built.

‘It’s being sponsored by some of the largest employers in the city – Astrium, BAE Systems, Airbus, and the Royal Navy to name a few.

‘It’s an exciting opportunity for young people in Portsmouth and in the surrounding area.’

Cllr Neill Young, cabinet member for education at the city council also attended the visit.

He added: ‘UTC will be an incredible new facility.

‘Young people will be supported to develop a career in engineering and STEM subjects and the input from employers will enable them to follow their chosen career paths.’

Admissions for Year 10 are closed for 2017, but remain open for those going into Year 12.