Public Release:  Entrepreneurial University of the Year 2012

Huddersfield takes top enterprise award at Times Higher Education Awards Night

University of Huddersfield

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IMAGE: Professor Liz Towns-Andrews, the University's 3M Chair of Innovation, collected the prize for Entrepreneurial University of the Year 2012, along with Dr. Kelly Smith (Head of Enterprise) at the 'Oscars-style'... view more

Credit: University of Huddersfield

Professor Liz Towns-Andrews, the University's 3M Chair of Innovation, collected the prize at the 'Oscars-style' event held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London from comedian David Walliams.

The University was commended by the judges for its "entrepreneurial outlook championed at the highest levels of the institution".

The University's submission highlighted the emphasis placed on enterprise and innovation and featured the £8 million EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Advanced Metrology, launched last year by Business Secretary Dr Vince Cable, and its strategic partnerships with Siemens, The Prince's Trust and 3M, who, with Kirklees council backed the £12 million ERDF-funded 3M Buckley Innovation Centre.

Professor Towns-Andrews was the inspiration and motivation behind the development of the Innovation Centre, which is now up and running and designed to forge greater links between universities, research institutes and the world of business. Professor Towns-Andrews is now the Centre's Chief Executive.

The Innovation Centre opened its doors in July this year and was named after the former 3M CEO Sir George Buckley, who is a University of Huddersfield graduate. Entrepreneur and businessman Graham Leslie was appointed as its first Entrepreneur in Residence and Professor of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship and its Managing Director Patrick Allen, who led the successful re-branding of the Co-operative chain to become one of the most go-ahead retailers in Britain.

Professor Bob Cryan, the Vice-Chancellor of the University, was delighted to win the award:

"We have placed a strong emphasis on enterprise and innovation for a number of years and this has flourished through the creation of a supportive infrastructure and the appointment of key personnel. We, and the local and regional community, are now starting to reap the rewards of this investment as we are becoming nationally recognised as a truly 'business-facing' university.

We are ranked in the top 10 nationally for undergraduate and postgraduate employability, student placements in industry, and the number of student and graduate businesses supported. Several elements of our entrepreneurial activity where highlighted recently as case studies in the Wilson Review of Business-University Collaboration.

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