Wrexham University welcomes Welsh Language Commissioner on campus 

Date: Friday, February 2, 2024

Students and staff at Prifysgol Wrecsam/Wrexham University enjoyed a visit from the Welsh Language Commissioner to showcase the work being done to ensure prominence and the importance of the Welsh language within the institution and local community.

Just over one year into her role as Welsh Language Commissioner, Efa Gruffudd Jones visited the University this week to see, first-hand, the opportunities which are available to both students and staff through the medium of Welsh.

Ms Gruffudd Jones and Osian Llywelyn, Director of Regulation for the Commissioner’s Office, joined Professor Maria Hinfelaar, Vice Chancellor of Wrexham University, and Elen Mai Nefydd, Head of Welsh Development at the University, to meet with Speech and Language Therapy students to hear how they use the Welsh language in healthcare settings as part of their placements, as well as taking a tour of the Health & Education Innovation Quarter (HEIQ).

Welsh Language Commissioner, Efa Gruffudd Jones; and Ffion Roberts, Speech and Language Therapy Lecturer. 

She also met with Professional Policing students, who are also benefiting from Welsh Language modules as part of their degree course – and heard how colleagues were engaging with and benefiting from Welsh language lessons. 

The visit also comes 12 months on from when the institution approved its Welsh Language Academic Strategy and Action Plan, which sets out to enhance the provision of Welsh medium development at the University.

Speaking during the visit, Ms Gruffudd Jones said she was “delighted” with the progress being made at Wrexham.

She said: “It’s fantastic to see that Wrexham University is making huge strides in relation to Welsh Language provision and the opportunities that both students and staff have to use the language.

“It was particularly pleasing to hear how the University is enabling students to communicate through the medium of Welsh, particularly in those subject areas, which are public services, such as Allied Health, Nursing and Policing. 

“It’s clear that Wrexham University has a strong commitment to contributing to Welsh culture and heritage, through enhancing language provision.”

Abigail Lee, first-year Professional Policing student, who has started learning Welsh as part of her degree, said: “Having the opportunity to learn Welsh through my degree is a huge bonus for me. All jobs for North Wales Police require a level of Welsh proficiency, so learning the language as part of my course means that I will be equipped for the professional world after I graduate.

“My ambition is to use this module as a stepping stone to become fluent in the language.”

Professor Hinfelaar added: “It was wonderful to welcome the Commissioner on campus in Wrexham and share with her the developments that we have made since the introduction of our Welsh Language Academic Strategy and Action Plan last year.

“Wrexham University is committed to celebrating the Welsh language and we are delighted to say that more students than ever before have opportunities to study bilingually across a range of our courses.”