Deputy First Minister John Swinney was at Dumfries and Galloway College to cut the ribbon on the new Skills and Learning Network. It is a pioneering partnership between Borders and Dumfries and Galloway Colleges, funded by the Scottish Government through the South of Scotland Economic Partnership (SOSEP)
The network will use a ‘hub and spoke’ approach to extend access to quality training and learning opportunities across the region. Hubs focused on care, renewable energy, construction and engineering will be based at college campuses in Dumfries, Galashiels, Stranraer and Hawick, allowing students to participate in classes online. Spokes will be located in high schools, community facilities and business premises enabling more students to participate in learning opportunities across the region.
Mr Swinney said: “The South of Scotland Skills and Learning Network will broaden access to teaching for students and learners of all ages right across the region. “With a clear focus on areas that have growing regional job opportunities, the ability to develop key skills without having to relocate will provide so many more people with an excellent start to their careers, or the chance to retrain to branch out into new areas. Today marks the launch of the network and I look forward to seeing how the colleges develop the technological platform that has been created here to its fullest potential.”
Dumfries and Galloway College principal Joanna Campbell added: “Working in partnership with schools, our local authority and all the other stakeholders allows us to multiply and maximise the knowledge, skills, talents and resources that exist across the South of Scotland,
“Our Digital Learning and Skills Network gives us a framework to further boost that existing potential. It is a forward looking, industry learning and hugely impactful development of which we’re all immensely proud.”