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The University of Wolverhampton has given its nod to an extensive refurbishment project that has seen £3 million investment in new facilities for Pharmacy students at its City Campus.

The School of Pharmacy, based in the University’s Wulfruna Building, has been revamped by national fit-out and refurbishment specialist contractor, Willmott Dixon Interiors to offer larger, multipurpose teaching spaces for use by students.

The project aims to provide a new flexible professional learning space, incorporating a dispensary, counselling rooms and simulation space for the development of clinical and consultation skills. There are also two new meeting rooms and a new reception area as well as a new multi-purpose flexible teaching space which will be able to accommodate up to 120 students.

Professor Ian Campbell, Interim Vice-Chancellor at the University, said: “We are delighted with the refurbishment of our School of Pharmacy. Our focus is always on creating an excellent student experience that provides our graduates with the skills they need to thrive in the world of work.

“These new facilities will enable our students to collaborate and learn using the latest industry standard technology and resources, and we would like to thank everyone involved in this project for their hard work.”

Professor Ruth Edwards, Head of the School of Pharmacy at the University, said: “This exciting refurbishment has been designed to enhance our successful Pharmacy course offering for a rapidly changing professional landscape.

“The extended learning facilities and meeting rooms will bring staff and students together in the heart of the city of Wolverhampton to support a vibrant and collegiate Pharmacy community.

“Applications for Pharmacy courses are on the rise and this investment will move the University’s plans forward for continuing to develop our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Over the past few years we’ve completely changed the ethos of how we deliver Pharmacy education with our investment in Team Based Learning facilities.

“The learning is active rather than static, encouraging teamwork which provides students with opportunities to engage more with their peers and we hope that this further refurbishment will offer students an improved environment in which to study and learn.

“This new space will enable us to build on that and enhance the clinical, professional and multi-professional teamworking skills of students through simulation and inter-professional education, which in turn will ensure patients in the city and region continue to receive the best person-centred care from our graduates.”

Angela Davis, Clinical Director of Pharmacy at Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, said: “It is an exciting time to join the pharmacy profession. Pharmacists are firmly established as clinicians, integral members of the multidisciplinary team and experts in medicine.  There is a significant demand for pharmacists across all healthcare sectors and this is only anticipated to grow.

“Our ambition is to have a skilled, motivated and happy pharmacy workforce and to make the Black Country the best place to work.  We understand the importance of growing our own, retaining talent and attracting the best people.  One of the ways in which we will achieve our ambition is by engaging with and working collaboratively with the University.

“I am really looking forward to working with the School to deliver more clinical placements with greater content and exposure to hospital and general practice, greater opportunities for work experience and a collaborative approach to quality improvement, research and development.

“With a new Head of School at the helm, this £3 million investment in facilities and adoption of the new education and training standards, the future for pharmacy at the University is bright and full of opportunity.”

Phil Crowther, regional director at Willmott Dixon Interiors, said: “We’re very pleased to have handed over a modern, comfortable and safe environment at the University of Wolverhampton, with new finishes, layouts and furnishings throughout.

“We hope that it will benefit staff and students alike for many years to come. We’re thankful to our excellent team, including our extended network of specialist contractors, for successfully delivering what was a challenging fast-track build programme in a large site, spread across three floors and two occupied buildings.”

The refurbishment project was awarded via the Pagabo refit and refurbishment procurement framework.

The project team included Faithful+Gould as project manager and professional quantity surveyor; architect and principal designer, Glancy Nicholls Architects; and structural engineer, CWA. Temporary works were undertaken by CWA and Bridges Pound.

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