Welcome to the University of Exeter, or welcome back. This email is designed to keep you up to date with University news. Also, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.
Sunday Times Top 10
The University’s status as a top 10 university has been confirmed by our new ranking in The Sunday Times University Guide 2012. The University of Exeter now ranks 9th in this league table, up from 17th last year, and has also been named runner-up University of the Year. The guide calls us “this most dynamic of institutions” and says “by next year £300m of new facilities will have come on stream”. The Sunday Times previously ran a piece on a new ‘Ivy League’ of UK universities. Their list of top 10 universities in terms of the number of AAB applicants includes Exeter in sixth place. This year’s new students are our brightest yet – 64% achieved AAA in their A-levels of equivalent.
Thanks to our 150 student volunteers who are helping Welcome Week go smoothly. It’s an exciting time of year, but do remember to stay safe when socialising - look out for your friends and respect your new neighbours by keeping the noise down. Download the free Welcome Week Smartphone App or look online.
The University is once again in the top 10 for student satisfaction, according to the 2011 National Student Survey. We rank 8th out of 118 UK higher education institutions for overall satisfaction. Exeter has maintained its top 10 position every year since the survey was launched seven years ago. We now rank 4th in the country for student satisfaction around the quality of our teaching, up one place from last year.
The campaign: Creating a world-class University together has been a great success, with more than 1,000 alumni volunteering time to work with students and for the University – clocking up more than 7,000 hours. It has also raised nearly £2.5m above the target of £23m. As a result of this success the volunteer programme will continue and the campaign – led by the Development and Alumni Relations Office - has been closed one year earlier than planned.
Top of class
The University of Exeter is the best in the country for primary teacher training according to the Good Teacher Training Guide 2011. The Graduate School of Education has also sustained an overall third-place position for teacher training for the last five years.
Some changes to the academic year have been approved by Senate, and from 2012/13 onwards the autumn term will have an extra week. The terms will follow a 12 + 12 + 7 week pattern. The University is also exploring the potential for an inspirational two week summer programme in the third term. Groups have been set up to develop these plans in consultation with students and academic staff. For more info see the update issued by Janice Kay, DVC Education.
The timetabling team and Colleges completed the timetable by early Sept, to help with extra-curricular planning. Following concerns of travel time around campus, this year students will be timetabled on a department ‘zone’. We thank you for feedback and would value your comments this year. Speak to your Staff-Student Liaison Committee (SSLC) rep and they report to the Guild VP for academic affairs.
A new online application form is now available for students to apply for assistance from the Access to Learning Fund. The Fund assists students who may need extra financial support while studying at University. There are also Access to Exeter bursaries for UK undergraduates, worth up to £1,500. All you have to do is apply for means tested student finance via Student Finance Direct and allow your household income details to be shared with us. You will be automatically considered and notified. A useful resource is the online student funding calculator.
40% more people are coming by bus to the Streatham campus since the University has worked with Stagecoach and Devon County Council to improve the service. This includes financial support for the D and H Bus services and service enhancements including larger capacity buses. To accommodate the bigger buses, North Park Road (outside Geoffrey Pope) has become the main campus bus stop and the Peter Chalk Centre’s bus stop has been closed as it’s too small. See the University Map and Public Transport Guide.
The University is now over half way through the schedule to completely refurbish the Main Library. Two floors have been finished, and by the end of January 2012 work will be complete on all three existing floors. Level +1 was completed in summer and has computing facilities, a mix of silent, group and solo study spaces and wifi throughout. In Spring the full vision will be complete with 700 study seats available, rising to 850 during exam times.
Last year 500 students completed the Exeter Award, which enhances the employability of University of Exeter graduates by providing official recognition and evidence of extra-curricular activities and achievements. Get started with your award here.
My Career Zone
My Career Zone is a new system that will allow you to search for jobs and opportunities and book appointments with the careers service. Over the coming year you will see more information added including part time work and volunteering, and you will be able to access careers resources and book onto events. Updates will follow. Contact the careers service by email.
New Community Guide
Students living in private accommodation will soon be receiving their Student Community Guide for 2011/12. It covers a range of issues from the dangers of being prosecuted for noise disturbance through to Gas Safety Certificates and refuse collection. They will be hand delivered by our new Students Community Wardens - so do say hello. If you’ve not got one by 6 Oct email your address to email@example.com
PC clusters upgraded
Exeter IT has upgraded the computer clusters across the Exeter and Cornwall campuses. Over 800 open access PCs have been replaced with brand new machines running Windows 7 and Microsoft Office 2010.
MyPGR rolls out
Following a successful launch of MyPGR to first year students on MPhil and PhD programmes, MyPGR has now been rolled out to all students on all PGR programmes. Use it for online recording of supervisor and mentor meetings, and look out for more features coming this Autumn. For more information see My PGR webpages or contact your College PGR Administrator.
Find out about events online here. Look out for a farmer’s market on Fri 7 Oct, 9am – 2pm on the new Piazza, outside the Great Hall on the Streatham campus. On Sat 8 Oct the GLOBE festival celebrates Exeter’s multicultural heritage with music, dance and art from 11am-3pm in the Lemon Grove, Streatham campus – contact Sophie. The International Student Support Office, INTO and Students’ Guild are building the online list – email them with suggestions of cultural events or visits.
Third year student Alex Robinson and recent graduate Tom O’Connell climbed all 283 of Scotland’s Munro peaks in just 49 days. They raised over £37,000 for DecAid; a national charity appeal that has been set up by our students, with the aim of raising a minimum of £350,000 for service charities.
Learn a language
Learn a language with the University’s Foreign Language Centre. You can choose to take credit-bearing modules as part of your Undergraduate degree (through Exeter Modularity). Alternatively, for a fee, take one of our Evening Language Programme courses.