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Lincoln College gets £250m contract in Saudi Arabia

Lincoln College has been awarded a contract worth £250 million by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as part of its Colleges of Excellence programme.

The college, which has 10,000 students across three campuses in Lincoln, Gainsborough and Newark, had to compete against 50 other applicants from across Europe, America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Staff and students in the UK will also benefit from surpluses from the five-year contract to further improve the facilities at its Lincolnshire campuses.

Initially the college will be employing 100 staff, the majority of whom will be UK residents, to work across the colleges, and there will be further recruitment drives in December and April.

In total, 26 autonomous colleges will be set up across Saudi Arabia, aimed at improving the provision of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in the kingdom.

Lincoln College will be responsible for three of the 26 colleges: Lincoln Al Aflaj Female College of Excellence (LAFCE), Lincoln Al Aflaj Male College of Excellence (LAMCE) and Lincoln Al Muzahmiya College of Excellence (LMMCE).

The Managing Director of Lincoln College International, Simon Plummer, said: “Having been rated Outstanding by Ofsted, Lincoln College is one of the highest performing further education colleges in the country.

“We aim to replicate the success we’ve had in the UK in Saudi Arabia and help the 40% of under 30s who are currently unemployed to find jobs.

“Our cluster comprises of two all-male colleges and one all-female all with a clear focus on developing English language skills in a vocational context.

“These brand new campuses, located south of the capital Riyadh, reflect the heavy investment in vocational training and increasing the ability of women to access training and employment.

“This initiative is combined with the Kingdom incentivising companies to employ Saudi nationals including females as well as offer grants to those wishing to start their own businesses.”

Simon Plummer also added that the move hopes to attract companies based in the East Midlands to provide the services and equipment needed to run the Colleges of Excellence, such as web development and branding, translation services, furniture and IT.