Terry Croft, Lord Sainsbury, Sir Keith Burnett opening the National Technician Development Centre 2018

Celebrating one year of the National Technician Development Centre

The National Technician Development Centre is today proudly celebrating one year since its official opening.

Based in Sheffield, the National Technician Development Centre (NTDC) was officially opened by Lord Sainsbury one year ago today, on the 13th of February 2018.

Over the past year, the NTDC have been working with over 30 Higher Education and Research Institutions, 17 of who are now official Partners.

The Centre team have covered the length and breadth of the UK running workshops and presenting at events, from Technician Commitment events in Belfast and the Tower of London to the Staff Development Forum Conference in Bournemouth.

The NTDC helps organisations in a variety of ways including:

  • Advising on reviews and restructuring of technical communities and technical services
  • Guidance on talent recruitment and retention
  • Activities to increase Professional Registration
  • Helping to develop technical networks
  • Delivering presentations and bespoke workshops
  • Supporting an institution’s Technician Commitment.

“Technicians have for too long been unsung heroes and it is right that our institutions and the country as a whole support technician professional development and networks which strengthen the careers of individuals and the total contribution technicians make to our understanding of the world and the productivity which supports our economy.”

Sir Keith Burnett, President of the Science Council and a long-standing supporter of professional technician education

The NTDC was set up following an investment of £1.125 million, including £546,000 from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and funding from the University of Sheffield and other partners of more than £580,000.

The work of highly skilled professional technicians can often be overlooked by the Higher Education sector and the challenges of recruitment are widely known. Research by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation suggests that the UK needs 700,000 more technicians in the next decade.

The Centre is particularly pleased that there has been a flourishing of activity in relation to recognising technicians. The increasing recognition of the importance of Professional Registration and the Technician Commitment are a sign that the sector is recognising the value of its technical workforce.

“Championing professional registration and career development for our nation’s technicians has been a priority for my Gatsby Foundation for many years. The interest in the services provided by the NTDC is testament to the growing acknowledgement of the vital contribution of technicians in our universities.”

Lord Sainsbury of Turville, founder and chairman of the Gatsby Charitable Foundation

“We look forward to continuing our work in 2019 and beyond. If you think your institution could benefit from working with the National Centre, please get in touch as soon as possible because our diaries for 2019 are filling up fast.”

Terry Croft MBE, Director of the NTDC

New TDM Report Released

Recently released, the TDM report entitled ‘Spotlight on Technicians and Technical Services in Higher Education’ covers the work of the Technical Development and Modernisation (TDM) research project that ran from 2014 – 2017.

Image: Terry Croft, Lord Sainsbury and Sir Keith Burnett at the opening of the National Technician development Centre in 2018.