The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T +44 (0)1227 764000
Kent welcomes government commitment to improve business-university collaboration
The University has welcomed a government commitment to improving the way businesses collaborate with universities through the use of partnerships and networks.
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) responded to the Wilson Review of Business-University collaboration by acknowledging that universities have done much to encourage businesses - particularly small businesses - to engage using various schemes, including those featuring vouchers.
The University recently re-launched its successful Innovation Voucher scheme, which provides support for project collaboration involving small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
The schemes re-launch came at a workshop, Business Growth Through Innovation, organised in conjunction with Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce. The event attracted more than 50 SMEs from the South East and provided information on funding and other help available to support business growth.
Carole Barron, Director of the University's Innovation and Enterprise Department, said: 'This event demonstrated perfectly the University's best practice approach to engaging with the business community.
'We are committed to strengthening and identifying new partnerships and networks with the business community, particularly SMEs. The report highlights the benefits of collaboration with universities supporting businesses' constantly-evolving needs, and in providing high quality work experience opportunities for students.'
The University's successful Employability Points Scheme (EPS) was also highlighted in the BIS report as an example of best practice. EPS supports the personal and work-skills development of students by encouraging them to self-select and collect reward points for active engagement in non-compulsory activities.
Stephanie Barwick, Business Engagement Manager at the Kent Enterprise Hub and EPS co-founder, said: 'We always knew that EPS would be welcome as it provides students with both life and workplace skills. However, we could hardly have anticipated the extent to which it has become so successful.'
Story published at 5:12pm 2 July 2012
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