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University of Sussex signs commitment to support technicians

Sussex has backed a pledge to support technicians working at the University. 

Through signing the nationwide Technician Commitment, the University has committed to work across five key areas to improve and safeguard vital technical skills in higher education and research. 

Steve Johnson, Chief Technical Officer at the University of Sussex, said: “I am delighted that the University of Sussex is now fully engaged with this important national initiative. I believe it will provide many opportunities for our professional technical staff, and allow them to engage with, and hopefully influence, the ongoing and future work of the Technician Commitment in areas such as professionalisation, training and development.   

“I look forward to working with colleagues over the next few months as we look to create an action plan for the University that details how we will support technical staff in the key areas linked to this commitment; Visibility, Recognition, Career Development and Sustainability.” 

Launched in May 2017 with support of the Science Council and Gatsby Foundation, the Technician Commitment is overseen by sector bodies, incuding UKRI, Wellcome Trust and Advance HE. 

Kelly Vere, Higher Education Engagement Manager at the Science Council and Technician Commitment lead, said: “The pace of engagement from across the sector is inspiring and we are pleased to be working with Sussex to stimulate positive change for the community. 

“It is clear this initiative is having a real impact and we look forward to continuing our work together to ensure visibility, recognition, opportunity and sustainability for technical colleagues across higher education and research.”

The commitment comes at a key time as the demand for technicians is increasing. More than 1.5 million technicians currently work in the UK, which is expected to rise by around 70,000 each year. 

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By: James Hakner
Last updated: Monday, 22 June 2020