Employer case study


Bel Valves is a leading manufacturer of high integrity valves for the oil and gas industry throughout the world. With a large proportion of the company’s business coming from within the subsea sector they identified a requirement for a course that had more focus within this area.

The company wished to shape the course so that it not only met the requirements of their business operations but so that it met requirements set and dictated by industry.


Having already worked with alongside Newcastle College for over 40 years, the two organisations began to discuss the key elements that would shape the course. In order to meet demand and address skills gaps, it was clear that there was a requirement for a Foundation Degree specific to the subsea industry.

It was important that the course was developed with education and industry experts and therefore members of staff from Bel Valves were given the opportunity to contribute towards the curriculum structure. In doing so, this ensured that both parties would be able to maximise the quality and effectiveness of the course from day one.

Following successful discussions, a Foundation Degree in Subsea Engineering was created and made available to not only Bel Valves and businesses within the sector but to those individuals that had identified a career in the subsea industry.


Bel Valves continue to place members of staff through the Foundation Degree, combining their work with additional study. They also have access to a talent pool of Newcastle College students to meet the requirements of their business, often recruiting students on placement schemes to meet project demands.

Bel Valves and Newcastle College continue to work in partnership to ensure that future talent within the subsea sector is secured for years to come.

Employers view

''It was important for us to be able to help shape the Foundation Degree to meet the needs of our business. We selected our own staff to get involved in the development of the programme to look at some of the modules that were going to be included in the course.''

Ray Couch
Group HR and Training Manager
Bel Valves