THE leader of Hereford's new university will be starting in July and is moving from Canada where he helped set up a new engineering programme.

Professor Janusz Kozinski has been appointed as the founding president and chief executive officer of NMiTE, Hereford's new engineering university.

He said he embraced the opportunity to take the job and bring a new way of teaching engineering to Britain.

The motto of the university will be, 'No lectures, no exams, no text books.'

He said: "When they come to the university they will focus on solving problems, together with professionals, in small groups. We are completely flipping the educational model.

"We are going to go one step further. The majority of engineering programmes are delivered in four or five courses at the same time and then they have exams at the end of each semester.

"We decided to change that and develop a new way of delivering a programme. It will be delivered in blocks.

"They will study one subject at a time for three weeks. And industrial partners, such as Cargill or Heineken, would then have a group of students working on that project together with people from sciences and economics and business and law and of course from the company.

"Within three to three and a half weeks they have to either design something or manufacture something. Rather than just studying theory they will be able to learn by doing."

The students will then be marked on the work they have created. 

Lectures will be available online for students to watch whenever they want to.

Mr Kozinski, who was brought up in Poland, is no stranger to a new model of teaching.

He was the founding Dean of the Lassonde School of Engineering at York University in Toronto, Canada. This $250-million academic start-up created a new concept of engineering education with a broad ‘Renaissance’ curriculum including humanities, law and business, a ‘flipped classroom’ model of teaching without lectures, and launched a commitment to become the first engineering school in Canada to achieve a 50:50 gender balance.

Mr Kozinski, aged 57, said within three and half years of setting up the programme they went from 250 students to almost 3,000.

He said: "We created something that resonated with young people."

Mr Kozinski had been to Hereford before as he carried out some research using the organ at the cathedral on how sound and music affects the brain and perception.

He said: "With regards to Hereford itself, there is strong potential for the university to become, let's call it an engine of social mobility. If you have so many young minds and young people that are driven. They are professional because engineering is a professional skill. So you hope that the university will certainly contribute to the economy of the county.

"Maybe even within time it may become one of the drivers of the economy and certainly be able to contribute to the culture of the city."

The NMiTE University project - to be officially named in September - will open in 2020 in the city of Hereford and will be home to 5,000 students.