The school has connections with over 1800 external organisations and local innovation start-ups based in the Tees Valley, North East and nationally. Using the university CRM system, we send regular updates to all our businesses via CRM campaigns and a quarterly digital newsletter where we highlight placement, internship opportunities, and invitation to our local external invites.
Deep and long-standing relationships are maintained through our school Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The MOU is designed with a number of interactions to: help raise company profiles with our students, provide essential work experiences (placements, live projects, internships), develop bespoke degree apprenticeships, identify collaborative research opportunities etc. As part of the agreement the university offers a discount on the use of our facilities and sponsorship of events or programmes.
Each partnership has a single point of contact in the form of a dedicated operational lead, one for the partner organisation and one for the university, an agreed calendar of events for the academic year, and bi-monthly meetings to ensure all the agreed interactions are completed. Recently the school signed an MOUs with Cisco Transportation Systems, Odyssey Systems, Double 11, Animmersion, Industrial Light and Magic, Silent Games and Ithica Films - with several more in development.
The School run a number of focused employability and recruitment events throughout the year inviting businesses to give industry talks and focused workshops, set industry challenges / competitions and live projects, share employability tips and review student work. These include:
- Student Futures Week is a 3-day event in the inter-semester gap in Jan for all years with external organisations giving industry talks, setting extra-curricular activities and competitions.
- ExpoTalent our 2nd year interactive showcase providing opportunities for external organisations to talent spot and a great opportunity for students to meet businesses, refine presentation skills and potentially secure work placements and internships.
- ExpoTees, a 3-day interactive event in May for all our final year students giving industry to view final year work, sponsor awards, talent spot and offer employment opportunities.
Each year the University funds 8-12-week internships providing essential work experiences for our recent graduates and students with local SME’s, graduate start-ups or on in-house University projects.
The School runs an in-house commercial production studio TUCan Digital Studio working on commercial projects with our external organisation partners and / or in partnership with other schools across the University. The projects are conducted by graduate interns or students mentored by academic staff - providing paid work experiences for our students and graduates and invaluable industry partnerships for our academic staff.
All of our courses are developed in consultation with our external partners. We run an industry advisory board, meeting three times a year, to share curriculum design and development, and collaborative research funding opportunities. This year our Industry Advisory Board welcomed over 15 regional businesses including Visual Soft, Clicksco, TUI and Cubic Transportation Systems to share their skills needs and challenges, and comment on proposed undergraduate and postgraduate developments.