Record applications for Lee-on-the-Solent based engineering college

  • More than 900 students have undertaken courses at CEMAST
  • Centre is marking its first birthday
  • Students have been working with firms across the industry
Have your say

IT’S been a year since the specialist engineering college opened and it’s now seen a 20 per cent rise in the numbers of applicants.

In that time, Cemast, the Centre of Excellence in Engineering, Manufacturing and Advanced Skills Training, has become the area’s central training centre for more than 900 full-time and part-time students undertaking engineering and manufacturing qualifications.

Studying at CEMAST is an opportunity for students to develop their experience, skills and understanding of technical subjects in a high-tech environment

Nigel Duncan, principal

Now, up to 1,200 students have applied to courses at the college, in Lee-on-the-Solent, within the next academic year. Students have come from across Hampshire and as far as Dorset and West Sussex.

The centre is run by Fareham College.

Principal Nigel Duncan said: ‘It’s all been very positive. We did have very high recruitment of students at the beginning.

‘The outcomes for students this year have been very good. We have developed the curriculum in a lot of places as well.

‘I am very optimistic about the future. The college is attracting a large number of students.’

The college also serves as a base for learners taking apprenticeship programmes with a range of firms in the industry including BAE Systems, GE Aviation, Britten-Norman, Vector Aerospace, Eaton Aerospace and QinetiQ.

Now, the college is looking at running a Saturday school for primary school-aged children, to get them interested in the industry while young.

Mr Duncan added: ‘We have got to look at engaging younger groups with a career in engineering to get them interested. What is important is for them to recognise that engineering is about maths.’

The college is also developing a new campus on its main Bishopsfield Road site.

Mr Duncan added: ‘Studying at Cemast is an opportunity for students to develop their experience, skills and understanding of technical subjects in a hitech environment.

‘The centre has also developed close links with the new Fareham Innovation Centre at Daedalus, which offers excellent opportunities for the more entrepreneurial students to explore the prospect of starting up their own business.’