Delivered by: Hon Graham Cregeen MHK, for Education and Children Higher Education Awards
Date: Friday 13 October 2017
Mr President, Chief Minister, Honourable Members, ladies and gentlemen…
Welcome to University College Isle of Man’s annual Higher Education awards ceremony.
As Minister for Education and Children, it’s my privilege and pleasure to be invited to open this auspicious occasion.
The Isle of Man Government is committed to an education system that serves our economy.
As our economy diversifies – and as we seek to attract new investment and new sectors to the Isle of Man – we must ensure education keeps pace with the skills required.
For several years, UCM has been growing the number of higher education qualifications it offers in partnership with the University of Chester.
In matching the breadth of qualifications to demand, UCM ensures our business and industries have the highly qualified staff they need to be successful – and that our home-grown talent stays here and contributes to our economic growth.
This year, UCM has launched a new degree course in cyber security: knowledge that all businesses require if they are to avoid of one of the biggest global threats.
Other new courses include an MSc in computer science and a foundation degree in sport.
UCM’s higher education courses run in close partnership with Island’s businesses and industries – meaning students forge valuable relationships with employers while gaining their qualifications.
These relationships pay off when it comes to students gaining employment at the end of their studies.
UCM’s postgraduate courses also allow Manx students who graduate in the UK to continue their studies – and start their careers – back home.
I’d like to thank all our distinguished guests for joining us at this celebration of our students’ achievements.
In particular, my thanks go to Dr Chris Haslam, Pro Vice Chancellor of the University of Chester, and Mr Geoff Moorcroft, our own Director for Education and Children, who will present students with their awards.
As we celebrate the hard work and achievements of our graduates this evening, we can see the Island’s future is in very good hands.
Congratulations to all of you receiving awards. I wish you a memorable evening – and every success in the future.