Lancashire Cricket is delighted to announce that University Academy 92 (UA92) has been named as the Club’s Official Higher Education partner on a multi-year contract.
UA92 will be based at the Kellogg’s building next to Emirates Old Trafford, which will be refurbished and modernised ahead of the new university’s opening in September next year, with more than 6,000 students expecting to be studying at UA92 by 2024.
UA92 is a new approach to education, developed in partnership with the award-winning Lancaster University, which means students’ degrees will be awarded by Lancaster University, and will include media, business, sport and psychology academic undergraduate programmes.
The brainchild of The Class of 92 (Gary and Phil Neville, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt), the new university is part of a wider Stretford Masterplan, being led by Trafford Council, with ambitious and exciting plans to revitalise Stretford, bring investment into the area, and enhance the local economy by £26 million per year.
As part of the agreement, the Club, alongside Microsoft and the other UA92 partners, will be co-developing the curriculum ahead of the launch in 2019, which will ultimately develop graduates with the skills and experience to meet the needs of the ever-changing commercial environment.
UA92 students will go on to progress to relevant and regular internship roles at Emirates Old Trafford, across media, content, marketing, hospitality and events, and play a key role in specific projects. There will be an early emphasis on content creation and online programming to grow the reach and engagement levels with cricket and the venue across the North West.
The partnership will see the venue’s world-class media facilities renamed the UA92 Player & Media Centre, that will provide awareness and branding across major events and media broadcasts, as well as many events being hosted on-site, including student recruitment days in the Point, the Club’s award-winning conference and event facility.
Overall, the partnership with Lancashire Cricket, will play a vital role in enhancing the local community, making Trafford and Stretford stronger and more successful in the longer term.
Gary Neville, founder of UA92, said: “It’s an incredibly exciting time for everyone associated with UA92. It’s been a long time in the making but we’re in a position now where we’re going to execute the plan. This partnership with Lancashire Cricket Club is another important step for us.
“I’m incredibly excited about working with Lancashire Cricket Club. It feels like a true partnership involving two forward thinking and fast-growing organisations. We are going to work together so that UA92 enhances what the Club is doing and equally they can help us with what we are aiming to achieve.”
Universities have traditionally placed academic learning at the core of the curriculum, supported by employability for the world of work. By comparison, UA92 will ensure academic learning is intrinsically linked to a distinctive experience, which places character development and employability at the core.
Neville added: “The team at Emirates Old Trafford has been fantastic with us from day one and it’s great that they have embraced this project as much as we have. I strongly believe that the long-term visions between the organisations align, and the team and I are determined to make this partnership a success.
“Emirates Old Trafford is one of the leading stadiums in world cricket following its redevelopment and the ‘UA92 Player & Media Centre’ is one of the best media facilities I have seen.
“Having the UA92 brand on it is fantastic, particularly considering how many high profile matches are going to be played here over the next seven years.”
Justin Hopwood, Sales and Marketing Director of Lancashire Cricket Club, added: “We are absolutely delighted to announce this new partnership, and we’re looking forward to working together over the next few years.
“We’re all very enthusiastic about the benefits that we will both share, aligning ourselves with a new and exciting educational institution, with the support of a top-10 university in Lancaster, right on our doorstep, makes this a very exciting partnership for the Club.
“This is a true partnership between two organisations that will see us offer unique opportunities for students in the world of professional sport, and develop the next generation of sport, media and business graduate.”
Next year sees Emirates Old Trafford host six ICC Cricket World Cup fixtures and an Ashes Test as well as a comprehensive array of international fixtures that the Club has been awarded between 2020 and 2024.
UA92 now joins the Club’s family of sponsors including global brands such as Emirates, Heineken, Hilton, Thomas Cook Sport, AO and Kukri as Lancashire Cricket continues to grow its commercial revenues to a record level.
Theresa Grant, Chief Executive of Trafford Council, commented: “I am absolutely delighted with the announcement of this partnership, which brings two of our key partners together, and strengthens the existing close relationship Trafford Council have with Lancashire Cricket Club.
“UA92 is a catalyst for regeneration in an area that already has many rich assets but equally has challenges around investment, and this partnership sits perfectly within the Council’s wider plans for the area. The involvement of Lancashire Cricket Club in UA92, as an international sporting venue, will further strengthen interest and investment in the area, as well as inspire even more young people in Trafford and the wider region to come to study with UA92.
“This year will see the pace of development in the area increase, and I’m excited to see plans being cemented and even more benefits coming from this fantastic partnership.”
Professor Simon Guy, Interim Principal at UA92, said: “This partnership announcement with Lancashire Cricket Club is another exciting stepping stone in the creation of University Academy 92. It is going to be a great opportunity for students at UA92 to have Emirates Old Trafford, as well as Manchester United Football Club, within walking distance of our new campus.
“We wanted a location that would inspire, engage and encourage our students to become the best they can be and the experience that will be gained at a club such as Lancashire Cricket will empower them to reach their full potential.”
Pictured: Simon Guy (UA92), Gary Neville (UA92) and Justin Hopwood (Sales and Marketing Director at Lancashire Cricket Club)