'Vaughan College move underlines our commitment to adult learning'

Posted by pt91 at Jul 26, 2013 10:43 AM |
Letter from Professor Mark Thompson, published in the Leicester Mercury on 5 July 2013

Further to your correspondents' letter of 29 June concerning Vaughan College, I write to dispel doubts that may arise about the future of the University of Leicester's commitment to adult education and lifelong learning. It has not been possible to write on this subject before as it was important to give our staff and tutors the courtesy of meeting with them first to explain our position, before airing views in public. That meeting has now taken place.

I can confirm that we are transferring all the teaching provision currently located at Vaughan College to the main University site where there is access to a greater range of student facilities and better quality accommodation than at Vaughan. The move, from the beginning of September, will bring lifelong learning into the heart of the University community.  The relocation is important as the current building housing the teaching is no longer fit for purpose and we feel that the best way of dealing with this matter is to integrate the work at Vaughan into the main University site.  The facilities will be improved, students will have access to the main University Library, to the Students’ Union, to state-of-the-art catering facilities and to all elements of the student experience that current students enjoy.  It is absolutely essential that those students following part-time degrees, certificate and non-certificate courses are given the same opportunities as our other students.  They will be located in particular buildings on our campus and taught by those people who have worked at Vaughan across the years.

While we understand that it can be unsettling to move from a familiar location, it is important to note that this is not the first time Vaughan College has moved, and that the University has affirmed its commitment to keeping alive the Vaughan concept of adult education and lifelong learning.  Moreover, in an era of uncertainty in higher education due to government cuts in funding, many universities have either closed or ceased adult education provision altogether.  The University of Leicester, on the other hand, is continuing to support adult education and lifelong learning and this change of location is an important element in our ability to continue to do this.

The University has been associated with adult education and lifelong learning for over 80 years. Long may that continue.

Professor Mark Thompson

Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Chair, Vaughan Steering Group

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