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Sheffield Hallam University has launched a campaign to highlight their positive impact on the region, whilst revealing exciting plans for the future set to benefit the wider community.

As thousands of students return to begin or continue their studies, the week-long 'Heart of the Region' campaign outlines how the University is improving social mobility, quality of life and the economy.

Sheffield Hallam is the most prominent university in the UK for driving improvements in education and championing social mobility. Last year Sheffield Hallam admitted more students from low participation neighbourhoods than any other university

Its ground-breaking social mobility partnership, South Yorkshire Futures, is improving attainment and aspirations for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds across all age groups.

The University is a large provider of health and social care training, helping to create more new members of the NHS workforce than any other English university. In the last five years over 8,000 students have qualified as health professionals, with a majority going on to work in local hospitals, surgeries and clinics.

Sheffield Hallam are specialists in healthcare research, with recent examples including trials which prescribe exercise as a treatment for prostate cancer, developing innovative respiratory masks for infants and launching a new neck brace that makes life easier for patients living with motor neurone disease.

They are also leading the development of a Health Innovation Park, which will co-locate research and innovation alongside education, health, leisure and business at the Olympic Legacy Park in Sheffield.

The University drives economic growth and jobs, working closely with local industry to address long-term challenges, attract investment and narrow the skills gap.

It is a national leader in offering degree apprenticeships - a new way for businesses to directly train and recruit degree level graduates. Sheffield Hallam has trained nearly 1,000 new degree apprentices and is set to open a new National Centre of Excellence for Degree Apprenticeships this year.

Sheffield Hallam University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Chris Husbands, said: "Recent years have seen the University play an even greater leadership role in the region - leading improvements in social mobility, quality of life and the economy through the impact of our students, research and partnerships.

"Our ‘Heart of the Region’ initiative aims to highlight what we do, whilst outlining plans to benefit the region even further. We are determined to support our community to make the improvements our region needs."

The campaign has attracted the support of high profile figures including Universities Minister, Sam Gyimah MP, and the Sheffield City Region Mayor, Dan Jarvis MP.

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Sam Gyimah MP, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation said: "It is vital that our universities have a vision that is local as well as global, representing its local town and community.

"In 1978, there were 4,000 students in Sheffield and nearly 45,000 people working in the steel industry - today that number is reversed, with around 60,000 students and somewhere in the region of 3,000 steelworkers.

“Sheffield Hallam is a fantastic example of an institution reviving the ideals of a civic university and I’m pleased that local engagement is central to its approach – this is more important than ever.” - Sam Gyimah MP

Dan Jarvis MP, Mayor of the Sheffield City Region said: "Sheffield Hallam’s cutting-edge collaborations with business, in areas including advanced health and wellbeing, are internationally significant, while closer to home, their projects, such as South Yorkshire Futures, are helping transform lives right here in our city region.

“As Mayor, I hugely value the contribution that Sheffield Hallam University make and am proud to be co-operating with them on a range of projects that will develop our region, grow our economy and help to create prosperity for all.”

For press information: Ian Turgoose in the Sheffield Hallam University press office on 0114 225 5220/ or Sarah Duce on 0114 225 4025/