WORK has begun on a £12m centre of excellence that’s set to boost skills across science, technology, engineering and maths.

The STEM Centre at Middlesbrough College will deliver training in advanced manufacturing, process, engineering disciplines, and digital warehousing and logistics to thousands of students.

Zoe Lewis, principal and chief executive, and electrical and electronic engineering student Kalani Ajisafe, 17, turned the first sod of turf at the site.

Loading article content

They were joined by chair of governors Bob Brady, Ian Smith STEM director, Steve Ankers director of engineering and Paul Redman construction director at Esh Build, part of Esh Group.

Ms Lewis said: “It’s amazing to see work begin in the centre, which we know is going to boost the skills of thousands of students across the Tees Valley.

“Our priority is to help people train for the careers they want, and the STEM Centre will offer state-of-the-art facilities and the best quality training available.

“We are also in talks with major employers about how they can utilise the centre for bespoke training for their staff and how they can get involved in mentoring students and providing work experience.”

Mr Redman, said: “We at Esh Build are delighted to be delivering this important project for Middlesbrough College.

“At Esh Group we are helping to provide future generations with the skills needed to achieve in the ‘world of work’ through a range of projects and schemes.

“For example, in the last academic year over 6,000 students at schools across the North East, Cumbria and Yorkshire benefitted from the ‘Building My Skills’ programme which is co-ordinated by the Esh Added Value team and delivered by Esh Group and its business partners.”

The centre is part of a £20m investment in STEM at Middlesbrough College and will be open to students in September 2015.

The STEM Centre is the latest project at Middlesbrough College involving Esh Group – the company demolished a derelict property behind MC6 and MC SPORT at Dock Street and helped create an innovative construction project which is helping hundreds of Construction students gain the skills they need to compete in the jobs market.