New direction for the West Midlands Combined Universities
The West Midlands Combined Universities (WMCU) has appointed a new Director.
Wayne Langford, 44, is joining WMCU from the Black Country Consortium where he has spent the last ten years working in a variety of roles, most recently leading LEP growth programmes with particular focus on business support, supply chain, energy, housing, innovation, export and inward investment.
Wayne spent four years at Advantage West Midlands, responsible for projects and partnerships in Worcestershire, securing funding and working on infrastructure programmes and prior to that he worked at Herefordshire County Council and in the Avionics and Retail industries.
Wayne said: “My work over the past fifteen years has largely involved building strong partnership networks, expanding more recently to include all three Local Enterprise Partnership areas. I’ve worked within the same geographical reach of the West Midlands Combined Authority and my aim will be to set clear priorities for WMCU and to build on the good work that’s already been done.
“Working in Higher Education is a new challenge for me and I’m looking forward to building on the strengths and ambitions of three forward-thinking Universities to deliver our high level objectives.”
Birmingham City University, Coventry University and the University of Wolverhampton joined forces in May 2016 to launch the West Midlands Combined Universities (WMCU) initiative to meet the demands of devolution.
The partnership brings together the institutions’ applied research and training expertise to develop skills and foster innovation across the region in support of the West Midlands Combined Authority.
Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor at the University of Wolverhampton, said: “It’s with great pleasure that we welcome Wayne as the new Director at WMCU. This appointment signals our commitment to continue working together, combining our strengths and areas of expertise to support the West Midlands Combined Authority’s ambition to put our region at the heart of economic growth and prosperity.”
Wayne will work across the region and have a base at each of the Universities. He officially starts in the role on 2nd October 2017.
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Notes to editors
West Midlands Combined Universities (WMCU) website – www.wmcu.ac.uk
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FACTS & FIGURES
- The West Midlands Combined Universities (WMCU) collectively span a region which encompasses three Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas and seven metropolitan councils – bodies which themselves make up the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).
- The devolved body WMCA covers:
- Birmingham City Council
- City of Wolverhampton Council
- Coventry City Council
- Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council
- Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
- Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
- Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council
- Black Country LEP
- Coventry and Warwickshire LEP
- Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP
- The area covered is home to over 4 million people and has an economy worth £80 billion a year (GVA) through its 130,000 businesses and the 1.7 million jobs it supports.
- The WMCU comprises three universities representing the three core cities of the West Midlands. Between these universities there is:
- a total combined revenue of over £600 million;
- to be around £1 billion of combined investment in the region by 2021;
- circa 70,000 students and 8,500 staff in total.
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