SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has called upon Ulster University to “step up and demonstrate their commitment to the graduate entry medical school project” by relocating their health sciences department to Derry.
It emerged during a meeting of Derry City & Strabane District Council’s Governance and Strategic Planning Committee last week that the University is planning to move courses out of Jordanstown and has not yet decided on a new location.
Elected representatives were told that the university was currently looking at options and that nothing had been ruled on or out at this stage.
Mr Eastwood said the obvious choice was Derry: “The case for a graduate entry medical school at Magee has been made. It has academic, political, clinical and community support.
“The head of the Civil Service has now made it very clear that the final decision needs Ministerial approval and that means we need parties to come together and form an Executive.
“We also need Ulster University to demonstrate its full commitment to the project and to making Derry a centre of excellence for medical health and life sciences. That’s why I have written to the vice-chancellor requesting that the university agrees to relocate its entire health sciences department to Derry. Placing physiotherapy and radiotherapy in our city would demonstrate their commitment and enhance the case for creating a medical health education hub here.”
Mr Eastwood said Derry has been “let down too often”. “The expansion of our university is a key part of our plan to transform the local economy and create a city that our young people want to live, work and set down roots in,” he said.