THE first new college to be created as part of a radical shake-up of further education in Scotland has been officially launched.
Edinburgh College, which was formed following the merger of Telford, Jewel and Esk and Stevenson colleges, opened its doors yesterday.
One of the largest colleges in Scotland with 35,000 students, the institution has been created as part of the Scottish Government’s controversial regionalisation strategy, which will see dozens of existing colleges merged and rearranged under the leadership of 13 local boards.
Mandy Exley, principal of the new college, said: “This is a significant landmark in the history of education provision in Edinburgh and the Lothians. We know that this is a sad day for some as three institutions from Edinburgh’s educational landscape disappear.
“However, as Edinburgh College starts to deliver on its aims, I am confident it will become a name that will have real resonance across Scotland, the UK and internationally.”
The college will employ about 1,300 staff and will operate from four main campuses in Edinburgh and Midlothian.
Education secretary Mike Russell said: “As one of Scotland’s largest colleges, Edinburgh College will have a key role to play across the country and particularly in Edinburgh and the Lothians. I believe it will offer new and greater opportunities for students and help make sure they have the skills and knowledge they need for jobs.”