University of Exeter: New SWIoT facility officially opens

The multi-million-pound facility, that houses the South West Institute of Technology (SWIoT) and located on the University of Exeter’s Streatham Campus, was officially opened on Monday, October 25th 2021.

At the event, key representatives from the SWIoT’s educational and employment partners were given a tour of the state-of-the-art facilities, before Professor Janice Kay, Provost of the University of Exeter, performed the official opening ceremony.

Speaking after the event, Professor Janice Kay said: “The new SWIoT building puts the University of Exeter firmly on the map as a leading university in the subject of computer and data science. The new facility brings world-class opportunities to students, and is a step-change in our degree apprenticeships offering.

“The building, robotics equipment and high-spec computer technology will support a significant curriculum, with modules such as machine learning, nature-inspired computing, machine vision, and artificial intelligence.

“This investment will help to train the next generation of highly skilled technicians and engineers, provide limitless opportunities for researchers to explore how we harness the power of computers and robotics, and will help put the South West region at the forefront of digital and engineering education.”

The SWIoT is a unique collaboration between a number of partner organisations, designed to train thousands of students in technical subjects across the South-West region, bringing unparalleled new skills development and career opportunities.

The new Institute will enable the University to work collaboratively with partners to research teaching and curriculum development in the SWIoT Observatory.

Through Exeter’s Degree Apprenticeship programmes in Digital and Technology Solutions and Data Science, students will gain unparalleled new skills development. The new facility includes an Artificial Intelligence Arena, and Computer Learning Laboratory.

The SWIoT is one of 12 Institutes of Technology located across the country in a unique collaboration between a number of partner organisations, developing state-of-the-art facilities for training the next generation of highly skilled technicians and engineers.

The new facility has been certified as ‘Excellent’ under BREEAM sustainability qualifications. The building is 25 per cent more energy efficient than a standard building and features a green roof with wildflowers, encouraging bees and other wildlife. It also features energy saving devices such as water shut-off valves which reduces the amount of water required during flushing and provides leak protection.

SWIoT educational partners include the University of Plymouth, Bridgwater and Taunton College, City College Plymouth, Exeter College, Petroc and Truro and Penwith College.

Employer partners include Oxygen House and the Met Office in Exeter, Babcock in Plymouth and TDK Lambda in Ilfracombe, with investment from the Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) for the Heart of the South West and Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

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