South Devon College is honoured to have been granted Foundation Degree Awarding Powers (FDAP) following detailed and critical inspection by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education. This prestigious development means that from September 2019, the College will be able to award its own foundation degrees for students studying at University Centre South Devon (UCSD).
The College has a long-standing history supporting the local community and region, working with businesses and the industry. These new powers will affirm South Devon College’s role and position, among the largest providers of college based higher education in the country. Less than 10 further education colleges in the UK currently have these powers, strengthening South Devon College’s reputation as a high quality provider of higher professional and technical education.
Having these powers will enable South Devon College to have a greater ability to create and tailor programmes with its employer partners, developing the workforces required to drive those businesses forward. What students will benefit from is a brilliant learning experience with relevant work skills being embedded to facilitate great careers and drive local economic growth.
The College will continue its partnership with University of Plymouth in the same way it has done for over 30 years, including providing progression on to honours and continue delivering their successful foundation and bachelor top up degrees.
Stephen Criddle OBE, Principal and CEO of South Devon College, said: “The Privy Council’s approval of the College’s application for Foundation Degree Awarding Powers is a step change for South Devon College and UCSD. It’s prestigious for both South Devon College and the wider community. FDAP status is something we have worked hard to achieve and is not easily obtained, requiring a track record of exceptional quality and performance in higher education. For the College, this achievement represents years of investment in staff, resources and building relationships with employers. With the Hi Tech & Digital Centre opening this September, this grant of awarding powers will have a huge impact on our higher technical and professional education. This milestone is a significant step in our journey and shows great promise for the future of the College’s provision of university status degree level education in South Devon.”
Matthew Harbour, Vice Principal of South Devon College, said: “We are delighted to have been granted the powers to award foundation degrees. Using our new awarding powers, we will continue to work closely with employer partners to co-create flexible higher education programmes to develop the workforce and support future economic growth. For future students, the awarding powers will facilitate the development of valuable work-related skills, underpinned by academic knowledge, to assist great careers through either full time study or as a higher apprentice whilst in employment.”
Caroline Lee, Chair of Governors at South Devon College, said: “These are exciting times for the College and the community it is part of. The College is developing a strong ability to deliver what is required in our local area. This prestigious status builds on the great possibilities available for local businesses to develop their workforce and for those preparing to embrace the world of work obtaining higher education qualifications.”
Alastair Wilson, Head of Higher Education and Academic Registrar, said: “Receiving FDAP will allow us to build upon our successful relationships with key employers, through the co-creation of curriculum. Further opportunities are becoming available through the development of our curriculum specifically relating to higher and degree apprenticeships.”
The awarding of Foundation Degree Awarding Powers to South Devon College follows a successful National Apprenticeship Awards Ceremony where apprentices and employers demonstrated exemplary collaboration. The College aims to increase investment for apprenticeships as demand continuously increases from employers and students.
With the launch of a new logo and ‘Space to grow’ becoming the main focus at the College, this additional recognition of UCSD’s higher education performance is increasing that space for students to grow more than they ever could before.