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Project Manager Sought For Proposed Nuclear Skills Academy Scotland

16th November 2006

A project manager is being recruited to take forward proposals for a Nuclear Skills Academy Scotland.

The proposed skills academy is being drawn up in partnership between the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Caithness and Sutherland Enterprise, North Highland College UHI Millennium Institute and UKAEA Dounreay, which are jointly funding the project manager role.

Based in Caithness, the proposed skills academy is intended to form part of the National Nuclear Skills Academy - one of 12 announced by Government on October 31.

The development of a national academy, including a Scottish arm, is a significant step towards ensuring the UK has a sufficiently skilled workforce to carry out the nuclear decommissioning mission.

The need for such status was recognised in the NDA's strategy, published earlier in the year, and forms part of a wide ranging skill development programme from school leavers through business support to research and development.

The NDA and its partners wants to develop the Nuclear National Skills Academy on a hub and spoke model, with the hub in west Cumbria and a major spoke in Caithness. Delivery would be through local colleges and training organisations and provided north of the border by the Nuclear Skills Academy Scotland.

An advertisement published today invites applications for a project manager capable of bringing forward a business plan and, if approved, delivering its implementation. The salary range is 40-50k.

John Farquhar, regional director of NDA, said: "The NDA will only succeed in its mission if the decommissioning programme has enough skilled people. Hence we need to ensure there is good quality training provision in place and the Nuclear Skills Academy will help us achieve that aim.

"In addition, we realise that many skills used in decommissioning can also be used in other areas, so ultimately the money invested by the partners will provide a real benefit to the whole community."

Carroll Buxton, chief executive of CASE, said: "CASE and others have been working with the team developing the National Nuclear Skills Academy project for some time to ensure that the Scottish arm of the project is based here in the north, building on the excellent work already being carried out by North Highland College and the UHI."

Rosemary Thompson, principal of North Highland College UHI, said: "The proposal to establish the Nuclear Skills Academy Scotland in Thurso recognises the value of local expertise, investment to date and potential for the future, in this field.

"The college has extended both its further and higher education training portfolio considerably over the past five years to respond to demand for these important, scarce and highly transferable skills. For instance, programmes for school-leavers, re-training for current employees, as well as graduate and post graduate training, are now in place.

"With this new partnership initiative, we believe we will be establishing the basis through which a substantial contribution for the future needs of the nuclear industry and other allied sectors can be made. In addition, the post-decommissioning requirements of a skilled workforce to support innovative and knowledge-based businesses in Caithness and elsewhere in Scotland will be assured."

Jerry Abbott, head of HR at Dounreay, said: "This is a real opportunity to jointly work on providing an educational and learning institution that will ensure that appropriately trained resources are available for both the decommissioning programme and the socio-economic regeneration of the area."

Job Specification Details Here


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