Gary Neville and Class of '92 to open university
Gary Neville and fellow former Manchester United stars Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes and brother Phil are to launch a university in Stretford.
University Academy 92 – a name clearly influenced by the documentary ‘Class of '92’, which chronicled the rise of the five players and David Beckham – will offer sport, media and business courses.
A branch of Lancaster University, it will be built on an old Kellogg’s site near Old Trafford and open in September 2019.
It is being supported by Trafford council, developer Bruntwood, Trafford College and Microsoft. Students there will be placed in internships at the tech giant and other firms.
It also has the backing of Manchester United and Lancashire County Cricket Club.
Gary Neville said: “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.”
The video below was recorded in February 2017
A leisure centre will also be built on the site, with the nearby Stretford sports centre closed and sold off. Trafford town hall has borrowed around £12m to buy the former Kellogg’s headquarters.
Sean Anstee, leader of Trafford council, expects 6,500 students to be attracted into the area.
“Trafford already has some of the best performing schools in the country, as well as a rich and successful history of sport and business, so it is an ideal home for this new and exciting education initiative,” he said.
“With Manchester United Football Club, Lancashire County Cricket Club and MediaCity on our doorstep not to mention more than 11,000 businesses, UA92 students will find it an inspirational location in which to study.”
Professor Mark E Smith, vice-chancellor of Lancaster University, said: “This is a good time to test the appetite for a venture of this nature for two reasons.
“Firstly, the Government wishes to open up the Higher Education marketplace to new and innovative ways of delivery. Secondly, businesses are becoming increasingly interested in how Higher Education can prepare students for working life.
“This project is designed to address both of those ideas head on.”
A three-month consultation will now be held on the plans.
Manchester City are planning a campus of their own, backed by Manchester Metropolitan University, at the Etihad Stadium.