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The Network for East Anglian Collaborative Outreach (neaco) delivers targeted and regional outreach activities across East Anglia as part of the Office for Students Uni Connect Programme (Uni Connect - Office for Students). neaco aims to support the most disadvantaged young people in the East of England to progress into higher education.

The University of Cambridge acts as lead partner and is working in collaboration with Anglia Ruskin University, University of East Anglia, Norwich University of the Arts, and the University of Suffolk as well as Further Education (FE) Colleges, secondary schools and other third sector organisations. neaco works with targeted areas of East Anglia where participation in higher education is lower than would be expected based on GCSE attainment.

neaco aims to address the government’s targets to:

  1. Contribute to reducing the gap in higher education participation between the most and least represented groups.
  2. Equip young and adult learners from underrepresented groups to make an informed choice about their options in relation to the full range of routes into and through higher education and to minimise the barriers they may face when choosing the option that will unlock their potential, including barriers relating to academic attainment.
  3. Support a strategic local infrastructure of universities, colleges and other partners that can cut through competitive barriers, offer an efficient and low-burden route for schools and colleges to engage with higher education outreach, enable schools to engage with attainment raising activity, and address outreach ‘cold spots’ for underrepresented groups.
  4. Contribute to a stronger evidence base around ‘what works’ in higher education outreach and strengthen evaluation practice across the sector.

Further information about the neaco project can be found on the neaco website:

Visit the Uni Connect website (Uni Connect - Office for Students) to find out more about Uni Connect and the government’s aims to increase the number of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds in higher education by 2025.

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