College appoints Paul Kift as Director of Skills and Business Development

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College appoints Paul Kift as Director of Skills and Business Development

College appoints Paul Kift as Director of Skills and Business Development

Paul’s immediate focus will be on the strategic development of GCS Training, the business training arm of Gower College Swansea, and apprenticeship provision across the College. Paul will also lead the External Funding and International departments.

A former student at the Gorseinon campus, Paul went on to undertake senior management roles operating across the UK, Europe and China. In 2015, he was selected as one of the “highest-flying young business and professional men in Wales” via his inclusion in WalesOnline's ‘35 under 35’ list. He was also an Institute of Directors (IoD) Wales Director of the Year Finalist.

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to help shape the skills agenda for a College and city that I’m hugely passionate about. With the Swansea Bay City Deal projects moving closer to fruition, and an increased business confidence being witnessed across the city, the necessity for innovative skills development has never been so vital. I look forward to working with employers and partners, both at home and overseas, to develop the talent that allows our region to thrive.”

Paul has assembled an impressive team of experts to support these aims.

Tom Crick MBE, Professor of Computer Science & Public Policy, will lead the College’s drive to develop digital skills for employers across the region. Professor Crick is currently an expert adviser to the Welsh Government and Chair of the recently-announced National Network for Excellence in Science & Technology, a £4m investment by the Welsh Government. He is also a Non-Executive Director at Dŵr Cymru and Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board.

Ioan Jenkins, Development Director at Tidal Lagoon Power, will help to develop the College’s energy provision but will also look at other trade skills gaps that exist, allowing the College to develop talent to support the Tidal Lagoon and other significant UK projects. Ioan has a background in renewable energy and is currently a member of the Welsh Government Marine Energy Task & Finish Group; he also leads the independent Wales Tidal Industry Advisory Group.

Chris Nott OBE will lead on the development of the College’s financial and professional services and business courses. Chris is Chair of the Welsh Government’s Financial and Professional Services sector panel. He is also the Prince of Wales Business Ambassador for Wales and is founder of two law firms, including Capital Law where he is Senior Partner.

Rachel Searle has been appointed as the College’s new Head of Work Based Learning, joining from the Workforce Development Trust where she was the Director for Wales and the Welsh strategic lead for Skills for Health and Skills for Justice Sector Skills Councils.

Jayne Brewer will join the College as Head of Employer Development in March 2018; she is currently Deputy Director at Wales Millennium Centre.

“There are exciting times ahead and I look forward to working with Paul and his team to further develop the growing portfolio and profile of Gower College Swansea,” says Principal Mark Jones.

GCS Training is a part of Gower College Swansea

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