Today, OnTrac’s very own Leigh MacFarlane and Chris Johnson paid a visit to Newcastle College’s Rail Academy. The multi-million-pound academy is the first of its kind in the North East and is dedicated to offering pioneering training and development opportunities for rail engineers of the future.
Following the visit, Leigh and Chris’ opinions of the academy was that it was certainly impressive in what it was able to offer its students. With its extensive teaching rooms and workshops, as well as both internal and external rail tracks, the students are given unprecedented access to real equipment, with realistic working conditions that enable the students an accurate representation of daily operations.
The Rail Academy offers genuinely exciting opportunities for students both now and in the future, too, especially considering the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s grand plans for a Northern Powerhouse. With transport links between the great cities of the North being intrinsic to George Osborne’s plans, it should come as no surprise that in October last year, it was the state-of-the-art Rail Academy who were chosen as the key venue to sign the historic devolution deal with North East council leaders.
Given the country’s well-established, rich historical links with rail infrastructure, as well as our own successful and positive relationships with our own clients in the rail industry, it was a genuine pleasure for OnTrac to be welcomed into the academy today. Not only did it allow us to gain unique insight into how the academy offers young people an exciting pathway into a career increasingly pivotal to UK industry, it also offered us an insight into the future of the North East’s inextricable links between education and industry.