London’s first University Technical College opens in Hackney

London’s very first University Technical College, which hopes to secure youngsters secure jobs with Tech City firms, opened its doors to its first cohort of students last Thursday.

Hackney UTC offers over 14s the chance to specialise in health or digital technologies, alongside a strong GCSE curriculum.

The building off Kingsland Road in Shoreditch, located just yards from the expanding digital zone around Old Street’s “Silicon Roundabout”, has been kitted out with high-tech classrooms, studios, laboratories and a replica hospital ward.

Pupils will benefit from strong links with companies and universities, including individual mentors, industry projects and the chance to gain work experience. Principal of Hackney UTC, Annie Blackmore, said: “After all our preparation and planning, welcoming the first group of students to our brand new school is a significant milestone.”

To ensure the school’s intake does not negatively impact on any one particular school in the borough, the catchment area extends from Islington to Newham and Southwark.

There are 100 places available this year and the school is close to capacity, but anyone interested in applying for a place can contact Hackney UTC on 020 7613 9345

A sixth form will open a year earlier than expected in September 2013.