Coleg Sir Gar merges with University of Wales: Trinity Saint David
A university and college merger will create a "radical new" education system helping 25,000 learners in south west Wales, says its vice chancellor.
Further education college Coleg Sir Gar in Carmarthenshire has joined the University of Wales: Trinity Saint David Group.
The university's vice-chancellor said it would benefit learners, employers and the local economy.
It is the latest in a line of educational mergers in Wales.
End Quote Prof Medwin Hughes UWTSD vice chancellor
Collectively we are delivering clear, tangible benefits for learners, employers, industry and communities”
Coleg Sir Gar which has five campuses formally merged into the University of Wales: Trinity Saint David Group (UWTSD) earlier this month following Swansea Metropolitan University which joined in October 2012.
UWTSD was formed in November 2010 from the merger of Trinity University College and University of Wales Lampeter. It has campuses in Carmarthen, Lampeter and London.'Improve opportunities'
UNIVERSITY AND COLLEGE MERGERS
- In April, the University of South Wales became the largest higher education institution in Wales by the merger of Glamorgan and Newport universities with about 33,500 students and campuses in Cardiff, as well as Newport and Treforest.
- Earlier this month six further education colleges came together in three mergers involving more than 73,000 students.
- Neath Port Talbot College and Coleg Powys become the NPTC Group while Coleg y Cymoedd (College of the Valleys) is created from Coleg Morgannwg and The College Ystrad Mynach, Caerphilly county.
- Coleg Cambria is made up of Deeside College and Yale College, Wrexham.
The move means the institutions will provide courses from post-14 education to degrees over 15 campuses.
Vice chancellor Prof Medwin Hughes said Coleg Sir Gar's identity will not be lost as part of the merger and neither would its campuses at Carmarthen, Llandeilo, Ammanford and Llanelli.
A more joined-up education system including input from local employers would lead to benefits for everyone, he said.
"We are creating a radical new system of education for Wales that will transform, shape and develop the communities we serve," said Prof Hughes.
"The UWTSD system is comprised of universities and colleges committed to educating students of all ages and backgrounds and stimulating economic development in our region."
Coleg Sir Gar principal Barry Liles added that at the heart of the development was a strategy to improve opportunities for learners at all levels across the region.
New Education Minister Huw Lewis said: "By bringing together further and higher education in this way, this new institution will be able to offer learners a whole range of different opportunities and build on vital partnerships within the business community."
In 2010, the former minister Leighton Andrews warned universities their future funding, including being allowed to charge higher tuition fees, would depend on a willingness to "progress swiftly to merger and reconfiguration".