Lancaster University

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Lancashire Receives Recognition At National Aimhigher Awards

10/11/2007 14:16:45

The Department of Continuing Education at LancasterUniversity is delighted to announce that Aimhigher Lancashire has won the award for Aimhigher Partnership of the Year 2007 at the first National Aimhigher Awards, which took place in Leeds.

The award highlights the significance of the work that Aimhigher is doing in Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen, and Blackpool to help local young people from disadvantaged backgrounds progress into higher education, by raising their aspirations and attainment. It is of particular significance to Lancaster University as, via the Department of Continuing Education (DCE), the University has been a particularly pro-active partner. The judges recognised that the Aimhigher Lancashire partnership "has shown particular ingenuity and effectiveness in widening participation in their area".

DCE has been lead partner in many Aimhigher Lancashire projects, including raising awareness of Foundation Degree opportunities in Lancashire among employers, working with apprentices to raise awareness of suitable higher education opportunities, and providing a specialised advice service on higher education for young people. The Department has also run the North West Regional Summer Schools Office for the past 6 years. This work has involved 13 partner HEIs and the delivery of one –two thousand summer school places each year to students from disadvantaged backgrounds who might otherwise not consider continuing to university.

The award recognised the partnership that has shown particular ingenuity and effectiveness in widening participation in their area. There were more than 150 entries in this year’s awards scheme, which was established to celebrate the most effective and innovative Aimhigher activities across the country.

Professor Keith Percy, Director of the Department of Continuing Education at Lancaster University, said: “Of course this is a very worthwhile area of activity to be involved in. Here at Lancaster we take seriously the issue that bright young people from some backgrounds tend not to apply to universities. The Aimhigher Lancashire activities that we have been involved in are aimed at addressing this and they support our own Access Lancaster initiatives. I’m pleased to say that hundreds of young people from Lancashire have taken part in the opportunities we have provided over the years, and we have worked with a great many partners. It is very rewarding to us and all the partners to see our efforts recognised by this award.”