The centre opened earlier this year, and an £11 million investment included five CNC machining centres and lathes along with the independent CAM software to drive them.

Explains Harlow College’s head of marketing Simon Boyceit: “We identified Edgecam as a software solution that is used extensively throughout industry for 3- and 5-axis milling, and for turning. When the students progress into work, they’ll be fully trained on it, and be able to hit the ground running.”

The new 2,000 square-metre centre focuses on key engineering areas including advanced manufacturing, operational maintenance, aerospace, and civil engineering, running a variety of B-Tech, Diploma, and NVQ level 2 and 3 courses.

The college has a number of technical partners, including Edgecam for the software and DMG MORI for machine tools. They have also retained the range of manual machines they had in their old workshop, to give the students initial experience before moving on to CNC.

Says Edgecam’s technical partnership manager Wesley Tonks: “The centre provides Vero Software with the opportunity to develop the UK’s technical skills base. In collaboration with Sandvik Coromant and DMG Mori we can ensure these young engineers are equipped with the practical knowledge for industrial manufacturing challenges in the future.”

Adds Harlow College principal and chief Karen Spencer: “Our new centre here at Harlow College develops the skills of students to use the latest advanced technologies, giving them a competitive advantage to get the best careers. Vero Software and Edgecam are world leading – we therefore selected them as a technical partner to ensure our students get real cutting edge industry experience.”