Jan Evangelista Purkyně University in Ústí nad Labem is the only public university based in Ústí nad Labem region. Established in 1991, it boasts of being the alma mater of a number of students exceeding 10,000. Operating in a region known for its long-term lowest intellectual standard and highest rate of unemployment in the Czech Republic, the University bears social and cultural responsibility for the intellectual development of the region´s human resources. With a staff of over 800, the University ranks among the biggest employers in the region.
The type of graduated professionals that are missing in the Ústí nad Labem region are largely experts in natural sciences, technical fields of study, health care, arts and humanities. Hence, prominence in support of an extension of study fields must be given to all types of study courses, i.e. Bachelor, Master´s and doctoral programmes. The existing spatial facilities are no longer capable to cope with the current requirements, and in fact hinder the necessary upswing of the University. In order to further increase the number of graduate population of the Ústí nad Labem region, an adequate material and technical hinterland needs to be created for the students, academics and research associates – with the aim to bring instruction standards up to a level that is on a par with the European average.
The UJEP campus is situated in the center of Ústí nad Labem. The construction thereof will contribute to the regeneration and revitalization of part of the town spreading over an area of almost 90,000 square meters, with a considerable impact upon immediate vicinity. Another factor underlining the significance of the Campus is its interconnectedness with the town. Campus premises will invariably play a major role in areas such as science, research and innovations (with emphasis on applied research and the commercial utilization thereof), and in development of small and medium-sized businesses run on the territory of the town, being directly supported through the transfer of University-generated knowledge, business assurance, and emergence of spin-off companies operating on both the territory of the University and beyond.
The Project is implemented in a way providing all University worksites with adequate space, technical and material hinterland for both the fulfilment of their core tasks and further development thereof. In that way, an integrated education hub of the Ústí nad Labem region will come into being – with learning and research capacities concentrated on one spot.
Within the premises, the education, research, and administrative and operating hinterland of the University will emerge, constituting the base of the Campus. On a gradual basis, transferred to the premises, will get the Faculty of Production Technologies and Management, the Faculty of Natural Sciences, the Faculty of Philosophy, the Institute of Healthcare Studies, the Faculty of Environmental Studies, and the UJEP Rectorate. The principle of sharing capacities will be fulfilled through the launch of the University Science Library, assumed to constitute the "heart" of Campus as well as of the multi-functional center disposing of big lecture halls, equipped with a hinterland utilisable as conference premises, and serving as the University´s laboratory center. In concurrence with the core premises will be another so-called services part, intended to be providing accommodation and catering capacities, space for sports and leisure activities – including hinterland for parking and additional services such as, e.g., a health care facility, finances, a shopping mall, etc.).
Since September 2005, a revamp of Pavilion B has been in place within UJEP premises; the Pavilion is now used by students and staff of the Faculty of Arts and Design. Also, revamps of other objects have been accomplished; these currently serve as learning premises of the Faculty of Social & Economic Studies, the Pedagogical Faculty´s library, chapel, exhibition hall or a quick snack facility. Completed was the revamp of premises to be used – for instruction purposes - by the Faculty of Production Technology and Management. At the same time, part of the Informatics Center is currently domiciled in the said building. In the North-East part of the premises, necessary landscape architecture intervention will take place with new parking lots being created, and removed will be the wall that currently throngs around the premises.
Upon completion of the Campus, the development of tertiary education will be ensured, as will be the enhancement of the cultural and intellectual potential of the Ústí nad Labem region; all that will contribute to the fulfilment of the central target of the Development Programme of the Ústí nad Labem region, i.e. to the discontinuance of the impact of negative effects of structural changes, and to a jump-start of the development of the region´s economic basis in these changed conditions - including the solution of employment issues. The Project will ensure the development of the University that – within the region – plays an irreplaceable role in areas such as tertiary education, research and development. The Project targets fall into groups as follows:
a) Advancement of the University:
• Integration of the University and dynamic development thereof, following the models of foreign universities.
• Creation of an integrated learning center/education hub of the Ústí nad Labem region, and concentration of education capacity on one spot.
• Development of education in a region with the highest unemployment rate and lowest number of graduates.
• Rationalisation of costs and cost-effective operation, elimination of capacity duplications.
• Introduction of the principle of sharing and cooperation within the university framework.
• Provision of quality education, creation of a cosy learning-friendly environment.
• Extension of the offer of study courses
• Development of human resources
• Development of services in the area of further education
• Introduction of tuition in a foreign language
• Quality of graduates
• Participation of professionals with long-standing practical experience in tuition and – conversely – practising of academics in companies.
c) Science, research, art work:
• Dynamic development of science, research and innovations under the principle of specialisation and uniqueness ("key awareness", strategic lines of study with future potential, focus on challenges of the region and the Czech Republic).
• Application of the results of research and development in practice.
• Setting up a shared academic research and laboratory center.
• Development of human resources within the given domain (motivation, mobility, further professional education of research and development staff).
• Protection of intellectual property and support of origination of patents, industrial patents and trade marks.
• Promotion of research and development results, and of art work.
• Involvement of students in science and research assignments and projects.
• Nurturing a young generation of scientists – support of talented students.
• Support for the formation of inter-faculty and inter-university science and research teams set up within the framework of respective projects.
d) Third role:
Cooperation with both the private and public sector in education, science, research and innovations.. Establishment of a contact and career center for cooperation and knowledge transfer.
Cross-border cooperation and projects.
Support of entrepreurship (formation of spin-off companies).
Enhancement of the quality of human resources within the region – expansion in the number of graduate population in a region with currently the lowest proportion thereof.
Reversal of the negative balance of migration of graduate population within the region.
Rise in employment level in a region with currently the highest unemployment rate.
Arrival into the region of investors active in hi-tech area.
Revitalisation of a vast brownfield – the former premises of Masaryk Hospital situated in the center of the regional town, with additional programmes of human resources development linked to the implementation thereof.
Support of science, research and innovations within the region, those being seen as a major factor of enhancing the competitiveness of the economic base. Increase in expenditure on science, research and innovations pursued in a region ranking – in terms of the aforementioned aspects – among significantly substandard ones.
Development of infrastructure for science, research, innovations and education – concentration of research and education capacities.
Creation of currently missing conditions for cooperation with the corporate sphere – particularly in technical and natural sciences.
Centralisation of operation and integration of services and attainment of operation cost savings in areas such as the consumption of heating energy, repair and maintenance costs, centralization of utility operations, and unification of services providers.
Improvement of study and work conditions of students and academics.