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Partners in detecting and preventing crime: university and police join forces

12th February 2019

Northumbria University and Northumbria Police have joined forces in an exciting partnership to help educate the next generation of officers.

Caption:Northumbria Police Chief Constable Winton Keenen and Northumbria University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter FrancisFunded through the Apprenticeship Levy, the university in Newcastle will jointly deliver the new Police Constable Degree Apprenticeships (PCDA) – which aims to best equip officers for life in policing.

From 2020 the entry routes into policing will change nationally. All successful applicants who don’t have a degree level qualification will join the new apprenticeship route to obtain one, at no cost to themselves.  It is hoped that the degree apprenticeship will attract talent from diverse backgrounds.

The university’s world-class experts in crime, forensics, business and law will work in partnership with Northumbria Police to equip new officers with the skills and knowledge they need to help prevent and respond to the changing face of crime.

Professor Peter Francis, Northumbria University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor and an internationally-renowned criminologist, said: “We are proud to partner with Northumbria Police to deliver the innovative PCDAs. Both organisations have a successful history of partnership, and this development, confirms both organisations’ strategic intent to work together to co-deliver excellence in research rich learning and professional development.

“Northumbria University is renowned internationally for its provision in criminology, forensics, law and policing, while Northumbria Police is committed to delivering an outstanding service and community policing.

“Not only will this exciting new initiative transform the lives of students on the new programme, the benefits of it will be felt in communities in the North East and beyond for many years to come."

Northumbria University Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Professor Andrew Wathey added: “We are delighted to be developing further our strong partnership with Northumbria Police to deliver new Police Constable Degree Apprenticeships. As well as providing an innovative education to future police officers we will create exciting research opportunities drawing on Northumbria’s expertise in criminology, forensics and law.”

Northumbria Police Chief Constable Winton Keenen said: “I am delighted we have partnered with Northumbria University to deliver entry routes into policing, which will help recognise the professionalism and complexity of the role fulfilled by officers.

“The new programme will provide an exceptional educational programme alongside shared practice and experience to deliver a strong foundation on which to embark on a hugely rewarding career.

“Police officers operate at a level where they take personal responsibility for difficult decisions in complex, unpredictable environments, which impact the public every day. They also face growing demands from new crime types and this programme will provide the knowledge, skills and professional practice to ensure we can respond.

“I look forward to the new recruits becoming a valued-part of an existing, highly-skilled and dedicated workforce who have earned the trust and confidence of our communities over many years hard-work.”

Northumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner Dame Vera Baird QC said: “This is an exciting opportunity working in partnership with Northumbria University to make forging a career in policing more accessible. It’s important to make clear – you don’t need to be a graduate to become a police officer – this scheme is about training you to become one. We are keen to encourage applications from groups of people currently underrepresented within Northumbria Police - to be more reflective of our local communities – and crucially, at no cost to the new recruit. This is a real opportunity to bring talent to the forefront thanks to funding from the recently introduced Apprenticeship Levy”

The course will be delivered on Northumbria University's state-of-the art campuses from March 2019.

You can find out more about Northumbria University's Police Education and Research Network by clicking here.

Following the launch of the PCDAs in March, Northumbria University will also launch the BSc Professional Policing degree programme for students interested in a career in a police-related field. To find out more about this new degree click here or come along to an upcoming Open Days

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