Scottish entrepreneur Marie Macklin CBE is the driving force behind HALO, which strives to regenerate areas by providing young people with the opportunity to access employment and mentoring.
The first HALO project, in Kilmarnock, a £65m regeneration of the former Diageo bottling plant in the town, aims to create up to 1400 jobs through a new commercial, educational, cultural, leisure and lifestyle quarter.
The concept has already spread to Belfast and other communities will be regenerated in a similar way over the coming years.
Under a new partnership, GCU will identify the potential for graduate apprenticeships and accredited qualifications, in sectors such as financial services, cybersecurity, energy and renewables, building technology, fashion business, and engineering design and manufacturing, on behalf of The HALO.
Marie Macklin, the HALO Urban Regeneration Company founder and executive chair, said: “GCU provides a world-class education to thousands of students every year so I am really pleased that this partnership will support The HALO’s vision of providing young people with the skills needed to make an impact in tomorrow’s world.
“The collaboration with GCU will see The HALO provide access to industry aligned and optimised work-based education that would not otherwise be readily accessible, particularly in disciplines such as cybersecurity and digital innovation.
“I want the young people who are educated in partnership with The HALO to be the best that they can be, and working in partnership with GCU we will ensure they are more than ready for full-time employment.”
Professor Pamela Gillies, Glasgow Caledonian University principal and vice-chancellor, said: “We are delighted to have found a partner that resonates so powerfully with GCU’s mission for the Common Good and distinctive philosophy of work-based education.
“We are keen to get started on our creative social, entrepreneurial and educational mission with the HALO and corporate partners to bring opportunity, skills, knowledge and transformational change to people and businesses at the heart of this project.
“For GCU, Marie Macklin is that rare individual who can be seen to embody the Scottish spirit of entrepreneurialism with philanthropy and a genuine concern for others. Her career, her generosity of spirit and her regeneration work are locked into a philosophy of giving back.”
Macklin was also awarded an honorary doctorate for business by GCU earlier this month.