Academics heading to Northern Ireland to study in the years to come will be met with an increasing range of options in engineering, thanks to the creation of a brand new specialist facility for the industry at one of its leading universities. The University of Ulster is preparing to open its acclaimed Centre for Renewable Engineering, which has been built at a cost of £1 million at the Magee Campus, reports the Derry Journal. More than £1 million worth of engineering equipment is currently being installed at the venue, and the first intake of around 50 students will happen this autumn. Such a project could provide a huge boost to engineering in Northern Ireland and the UK as a whole, encouraging young people to seek a qualifications in this area and subsequently forge a career in engineering jobs. The university is to run its new engineering degrees over four and five years and, once the programme is up to speed, in the region of 200 places will be available. Dr Justin Quinn, director of the new centre, said: "I see our new developments in engineering at Magee as servicing the industry in the north-west, providing well-qualified graduates who are familiar with the techniques and needs of the kind of engineering that is currently carried on in the region." He went on to explain the university is offering four courses to begin with - a BEng Hons and a MEng in mechanical and manufacturing engineering, along with a BEng Hons and an MEng in renewable energy engineering. "We've chosen these courses carefully: both will suit the area in many ways, because mechanical engineering in the Derry/Tyrone/Fermanagh area is very strong," Dr Quinn added. The expert believes that Northern Ireland is ideally placed to excel in a number of areas of engineering, as he cited its potential in renewable energy as a key reason. In particular, the country is said to boast excellent resources in wind, wave, tidal and hydro power.
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