The University of Sunderland and Santander have signed a new three-year partnership agreement.
The collaboration will provide scholarships for students, including those entering the newly established Sunderland School of Medicine, which will welcome its first cohort of students in September 2019.
The agreement was signed by the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Sir David Bell, and Director of Santander Universities in the UK, Matt Hutnell.
The signing ceremony, held at National Glass Centre on the University’s Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter’s, was also attended by Chancellor Steve Cram in one of his final engagements before he steps down from his role in July.
Through this new partnership, Santander will fund a variety of initiatives creating enhanced opportunities for University of Sunderland students and graduates to make the most of their higher education experience and to improve their employability prospects.
Santander’s financial support will also enable students to develop their entrepreneurial skills and launch their own businesses in conjunction with the established and successful programmes within the University’s centre for enterprise and innovation – Hope Street Xchange – on its city centre campus.
Sir David Bell, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sunderland, said: “This exciting partnership will provide University of Sunderland students with a broad range of opportunities.
“From supporting our new medical students to helping dynamic young entrepreneurs build the businesses of the future, we are enormously grateful for Santander’s support.
“We look forward to a fruitful and successful three years as we work in partnership with Santander.”
Matt Hutnell, Director, Santander Universities UK, said: “We are delighted to welcome the University of Sunderland to the Santander Universities network.
“We are committed to supporting Higher Education institutions as well as local communities across the UK.
“Through this new partnership we will be able to collaborate to not only help students at the University of Sunderland thrive, but ensure our mutual projects can deliver real economic and social benefits to the wider community as well.”
Santander Universities was launched by Santander in 1996 with the primary aim for universities to share goals of internationalisation, transfer of knowledge and fostering of entrepreneurial skills.
This new agreement marks the 86th partnership for Santander Universities in the UK.
The Bank has established partnerships with over 1,200 universities in 20 countries.
Mandi Purvis, President of Wellbeing at Sunderland Students’ Union, added: “We’re delighted that students at Sunderland will directly benefit from this support, and would like to thank Santander and the University for backing students’ ideas, careers and entrepreneurialism in this way.”