17 September 2015
I was incredibly proud to speak at an event with the Dean Trust here at UKFast Campus last night. The Trust looks after six schools in Greater Manchester and last night launched its latest facility: Dean Trust Ardwick.
The new school isn’t quite finished yet so we offered our space to welcome parents and pupils to meet the Ardwick team and meet the UKFast team, who will work closely alongside the Trust to bring incredible tech education to the area.
It really was an extraordinary event. The Dean Trust has transformed schools in some of the most in-need areas of the city. They teach a wide range of children and have no barriers to the learning and encouragement that they provide.
It was a truly emotional moment to hear Tarun Kapur, CEO of the Dean Trust and two of the new school’s students speak to the parents in the room and let them know that no matter what the child’s background, the school and its teachers are there to help them grow. Regardless of where they live in the area, whether they can speak English well or not, each child receives the same standard of care and attention and is expected to adhere to the same high standards.
When I look back ten years, we got involved with Ashton-on-Mersey – another Dean Trust school – to help change the face of technology education, making it accessible for all. We’ve been close partners with schools across the region since.
For a partnership to really work, you have to have aligned goals and common values. The Dean Trust ultimately aims to improve education and equip children with the skills to work after school. Our goal at UKFast is to ensure that learning continues outside of a school environment and to equip pupils with the roadmap they need to follow a career in this industry. It’s a perfect match.
A decade ago, at that first encounter with Ashton-on-Mersey, I had no idea just how incredible an adventure this would become.
It is a real honour to play a role in shaping the futures of these young people.
We can see it every day in the astonishing pace that our apprentices are developing, many of them having joined us from Dean Trust schools. The boys, who started here as our first raft of apprentices, are now men towering over me and playing essential roles in the business.
Whether looking for a career in our industry or not, to the pupils of the new school, I say, I wish when I was your age someone had said this to me: the world is your oyster. Whilst you might look up to the adults making a difference today, pretty soon you’ll be the ones building new homes, creating new roads; you’ll be the doctors, nurses and programmers changing the world.
The Dean Trust, myself and UKFast are here to help you on that journey.