HRH The Princess Royal visits the University of Cumbria

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Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal visited the Fusehill Street campus of the University of Cumbria today and opened the new teaching block housing facilities for the institution’s STEM programmes.

On arrival, Her Royal Highness was greeted by dignitaries including the High Sheriff of Cumbria, Alistair Wannop, Vice Chairman of Cumbria County Council, Councillor Elizabeth Mallinson, The Mayor of Carlisle, Councillor Trish Vasey and Town Clerk and Chief Executive of Carlisle City Council, Dr Jason Gooding.

Hosted by Vice Chancellor Professor Julie Mennell during the visit, The Princess Royal met with members of staff and university partners who explained the various strands of the university’s provision and the importance of collaborative working within the county and region.

Towards the end of the visit Her Royal Highness gave a short address to staff, students and guests in which she commented on the importance of the university’s role in the county and the opportunity it now has, entering its second decade, to “build history”.

The University of Cumbria was formed ten years ago making it one of Britain's youngest universities, however, its preceding history goes back over 150 years. Formed in 2007 from the union of Cumbria Institute of the Arts, St Martin’s College, Lancaster and UClan’s Cumbrian sites, the university now boasts vibrant campuses in Carlisle, Lancaster, Ambleside and London.

The university celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2017, a celebration that will reinforce its success, while supporting its sustainable and stable position within the region.

Since inception, the university has developed a strong academic reputation in education, healthcare and visual and performing arts. More recently the university diversified into broader academic areas with suite of science programmes. The new courses include biology, zoology and chemistry, all supported by a £3.5m investment in a new high-spec laboratory.

Friendly and compact campus communities foster supportive learning environments and easy access to award-winning student support means student satisfaction levels are high and rising. The university prides itself on its career-focused degrees. Six months after graduating, 9/10 of students find employment or continue further studies.

The university’s ranking in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework moved up 17 places, with a considerable increase in research recognised as ‘world-leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’. We have a vibrant research community with over 100 postgraduate research students registered at the University of Cumbria, all supervised by Cumbria academic staff. The final award is validated by Lancaster. We are seeking our own Research Degree Awarding Powers.

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