GUS Robinson Developments has launched a rolling, long-term £10,000-a-year scholarship programme with Hartlepool College of Further Education.
The innovative scheme heralds the formation of the Gus Robinson Foundation, which is being developed into a charitable arm of the company.
The scholarship awards will be broken down across a range of subjects and developed as a partnership between the college and the Gus Robinson Developments.
There will be £1,000 for the college’s apprentice of the year and £1,000 for sporting achievement tied in with Hartlepool Sporting Association and for the Aerospace programme.
Also, £500 cadetships will go to two students at the end of year one followed by a £2,000 scholarship award offered at the end of year two, to support the winner through a degree programme.
The other £5,000 will be used to facilitate foreign study visits. It is aimed at broadening the horizons of students and giving them access to international experiences.
Following the sudden death of dad Gus last year, Gus Robinson Developments’ chairman, Dan Robinson, is determined to support local students to develop leading edge skills that will allow them to flourish in a global economy.
Following the community ethos of his late father, he said: “My dad was committed to the local community and that is the DNA of this company.
“He will be remembered for always giving something back and these scholarship awards will cement that.
“We are passionate about people being able to express themselves and to compete at every level.”
Hartlepool College of Further Education principal Michael Bretherick said: “There’s never been anything like this before.
“The college is committed to internationalism and that is shared by this company.
“We both recognise that people are growing up in a global economy and a lot of the scholarship money will allow students to go on foreign studies visits.
“Aerospace students could for example go to the Airbus factory in Toulouse, while business students could go to Wall Street and motor vehicle students to the SEAT factory in Barcelona.
“It is a ground-breaking scheme and will give students opportunities they might never have got the chance to enjoy.
“With the legacy of Gus and the energy of Dan we are able to give students opportunities not available anywhere else.”
As part of the scheme all study groups will be invited to put forward a bid for funding for overseas study visits and they will be judged by a Dragon’s Den-style panel.
The first awards are expected to be given out in the autumn.