Hundreds of Carmarthenshire pupils will soon be learning about the £1.3 billion Swansea Bay City Deal.
From September, the City Deal will feature as part of the enterprise and employability module of the Welsh Baccalaureate at schools across the county.
Following a trial in Carmarthenshire, the scheme could also be rolled out to schools in Swansea, Neath Port Talbot and Pembrokeshire in future.
A qualification for 14 to 19-year-olds in Wales, the Welsh Baccalaureate aims to help students develop knowledge and skills that universities and employers want them to have when they leave school.
The Carmarthenshire trial is part of the Skills and Talent initiative, being led by the Regional Learning and Skills Partnership South West and Mid Wales. The initiative will underpin all City Deal projects, helping give people a pathway to access the thousands of well-paid jobs that will be created in sectors like life sciences, energy, smart manufacturing and the creative industries.
Cllr Emlyn Dole, Carmarthenshire Council Leader, said: “The Swansea Bay City Deal will create close to 10,000 new, high-quality jobs across the City Region, but it’s vitally important local people benefit from these job opportunities.
“That’s why a Skills and Talent initiative led by Carmarthenshire Council will support all City Deal projects, including the £200m Wellness and Life Science Village at Delta Lakes in Llanelli, and the ‘Yr Egin’ creative cluster at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s campus in Carmarthen.
“Subject to the approval of a business case by the UK and Welsh Governments, the Skills and Talent initiative will give children throughout the City Region a pathway to access the jobs being created by the City Deal by opening up suitable courses in schools, colleges and universities focussing on subjects aligned to the City Deal projects, including life sciences, digital technology, construction, and sustainable energy research and development.
“The trialling of the City Deal as part of the Welsh Baccalaureate in Carmarthenshire schools from September will raise awareness of the game-changing investment that’s about to unfold across South West Wales, helping inform students and teachers about the kind of innovative local projects, jobs and opportunities that are in the pipeline.”
Swansea Bay City Deal projects are being funded, subject to the approval of business cases, by the UK Government, the Welsh Government, the public sector and the private sector. Over the next 15 years, the City Deal will boost the regional economy by £1.8bn.
The Swansea Bay City Deal is being led by the four regional local authorities - Carmarthenshire Council, Swansea Council, Neath Port Talbot Council and Pembrokeshire Council - together with the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg and Hywel Dda University Health Boards, Swansea University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, and private sector partners.
Other City Deal projects include the Swansea City and Waterfront Digital District, which will feature a digital indoor arena, a digital village for tech businesses, and a ‘box village’ development for start-up companies at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s SA1 campus. A Homes as Power Stations project is also planned for the City Region as a whole, with all projects to be supported by world class digital infrastructure.