The Guardian reports that members of Manchester United’s famous “class of 92” have unveiled plans to open a university that will teach students how to understand finance, cope under pressure and “maintain a healthy body and mind”.
University Academy 92, or UA92, the brainchild of Gary Neville and former teammates Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and Phil Neville, will open in Trafford in September 2019.
The institution, which is backed by Lancaster University and Trafford council, aims to attract students who otherwise might not go on to higher education. It plans to offer “broader courses than traditional degrees, designed to enhance life skills as well as employability”.
Unveiling the project, Gary Neville, now a property developer and founder of the project, said in a statement: “There should be no limits to what you can achieve with the right preparation. Our aim is that UA92 graduates would leave with an academic qualification, of course, but also with a range of other skills such as how to deal with pressure, understand finance, leadership and presentational skills, and also how to maintain a healthy body and mind. In other words, the complete package you need to succeed in the workplace.”
UA92 is also backed by nearby Manchester United football club and Lancashire county cricket club.
A spokesperson from the Department of Education said the plans highlighted “how academia and business can collaborate to create a ground-breaking new model of higher education”.
Prof Mark E Smith, the vice-chancellor of Lancaster University, said businesses were becoming increasingly interested in how higher education could prepare students for working life. “This project is designed to address both of those ideas head on,” he said.
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