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The University of Greenwich is a British university located in the London Borough of Greenwichmarker, Londonmarker, Englandmarker and was founded in 1890. The main campus is the grounds of the Old Royal Naval Collegemarker: the centre piece of the Maritime Greenwich UNESCO World Heritage Site. The University of Greenwich provides students and researchers with a great campus atmosphere: The royal courts at Maritime Greenwich, the Victorian library in Eltham and the ivy clad buildings at Medway. The University of Greenwich benefits from a stunning campus environment, rivalling the spires of Oxford ; the prestigious old Royal Naval College on the Greenwich waterfront, yet well connected to central London by underground and train services.

"A university campus to rival ... Oxford's spires or the Great Court at Cambridge ... the setting is undoubtedly one of the grandest of any university in the world."London Evening Standard

"A campus to make many of its longer-established rivals turn green ... the architectural jewel in Greenwich's crown is here."Sunday Times

Situated on the south side of the river Thames in central Greenwichmarker it is near London's financial centre Canary Wharfmarker. The University shares a campus with four research universities in Medway. The University is the leading modern university for research income from industry and is a pioneer in many engineering disciplines and pharmacy. The University's research income is greater than most other universities in London. It is the UK's second most international university with students coming from Europe, Asia and Africa. The University of Greenwich educates leading professsionals in engineering, business, computing and the sciences as well as the humanities and arts through innovative research and multidisciplinary courses.Charles K. Kao, Nobel Prize Winner in Physics for Transmission of light in fibre optics, 2009. The renowned scientist studied Electrical Engineering at the University of Greenwich.


The history of the University dates back to 1890, when Woolwich Polytechnic was founded as the second oldest Polytechnic of the United Kingdom. In 1970,Woolwich Polytechnic merged with various other higher education institutions to form Thames Polytechnic. In the following years, Dartford College (1976), Avery Hill College (1985), Garnett College (1987) and parts of Goldsmiths College and the City of London College (1988) were incorporated, extending considerably the range of subjects taught.

In 1992, the century-old Thames Polytechnic was granted university status by the Major government (together with various other polytechnics) and renamed University of Greenwich. Traditionally, the institution has focused on engineering, mathematics, computing and natural science. In recent decades, its Business School has become a particular strength, attracting students from across the world.

Since the 19th century, the University has expanded from a technical institution to a regional leader teaching a range of subjects across engineering, natural sciences, social sciences, humanities and business. Its research focus is applied science with strong links to the scientific community.

The last years research income from industry has grown year after year. Technical start-up companies have established in the Thames Valley. These companies have strong ties to the university. This has been one reason for the recent success in the Government Research Assessment in 2008.

Since 2004, it has been run by Vice Chancellor Tessa Blackstone, one of the most accomplished university administrators and educational policy experts in the United Kingdom. She's published several scholarly books in the field of educational policy and educational administration. Blackstone obtained her Ph.D. specializing in educational administration from the London School of Economics, then went on to become a Professor of Educational Administration at the world-renowned University of London Institute of Education. She had also headed another leading college of the University of London, as the Master of Birkbeck College. Her career in educational policy peaked when she became both the Minister for Education (1997-2001) and the Minister for Arts (2001-2003) of the United Kingdom under the Labour government, before becoming the Vice Chancellor of the University of Greenwich in 2004. She is also a Labour life peer in the British House of Lords. The university has since grown from strength to strength under her leadership.

Under Professor Blackstone, the university becomes one of the most diverse universities with students from more than 100 countries , and one of the most international universities, with academic collaborations spread across Europe, Asia and Africa.

Vice Chancellor Blackstone's Office also directly oversees the Learning and Quality Unit (LQU) which "provides an institutional focal point for the University’s approach to integrating learning and quality. It is responsible for supporting the University’s oversight of quality management and its development of learning- and quality-related policy and strategy", thus ensuring its high academic standards.

Teaching and research

The University of Greenwich has particular strengths in business studies through its Business School, in education, training and lifelong learning through its School of Education and Training, and in computing, information systems and multimedia technology through the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences. It is particularly renowned for its MBA program and Business School. It had won the Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education in 2008. It also has strong links with further education colleges in the Thames Gatewaymarker area, including Bexley College and North West Kent College, and plays a leading regional role in training teachers, nurses and social care professionals. In addition, since taking over the UKs only specialist lecturer training college (Garnett College) it has become a major centre for training further education lecturers. It also includes Greenwich Maritime Institute, a freestanding department in the university with strong links in the maritime business community, teaching maritime policy and management and maritime history.

The University established the Medway School of Pharmacy jointly with the University of Kent which is one of the best schools of pharmacy in the United Kingdom. The School of Science has a growing reputation world wide. There are strong links with national and international companies and technical graduates have gained senior management positions in reputable firms. The Natural Resource Institute is a highly successful part of the University supported by the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation. The last RAE examination in 2008 showed that School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences has accomplished research equivalent to that at Imperial College London and other research intensive universities. The School is most successful in Mechanical Engineering research and aeronautical engineering.

In March 2005 it was announced that Greenwich would be one of three British universities charging less than the £3000-per-year limit to be introduced from academic year 2006. After consultation with students, Greenwich will charge £2,500 for its undergraduate courses. Vice-chancellor Baroness Blackstone said this was "a reflection of our wish to attract students from a wide range of backgrounds".

Greenwich also houses some first-class research and consultancy, notably in architecture, landscape architecture, employment relations, fire safety, natural resources, social network analysis, education, training, educational leadership and public services. The University of Greenwich has established research partnerships with the European Space Agency and the large pharmaceutical companies. Support comes as well from the Indian government and Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Education.

The University of Greenwich has recently established the Institute of Converging Arts and Sciences which will examine the development of digital technology. Another famous research center is the Natural Resources Institute in Medway, Kent.

University campus

The University of Greenwich campus environment is surrounded by history: Victorian libraries in Eltham, ivy clad buildings in Medway and royal court yards in Greenwich. The Sunday Times 2007 refered to Greenwich University as more impressive then Versailles. Famous architects create a new landmark building for London, the new School of Architecture in Maritime Greenwichmarker worth 100 million pound. The University of Greenwich at Medway is becoming one of the most interesting campus universities in the UK. It is a collaboration between four universities based in South East England. The University of Greenwich has redeveloped the Naval Drill Halls at Medway into a library for science students with new laboratories for scientific research.

The University of Greenwich offers halls of residence to its students on the three main campuses - Avery Hill, Greenwich and Medway - all of which are either complete new build projects or modern refurbishments offering high specification study/bedrooms, equipped to the high standards. Students often have a choice of accommodation, from single study/bedrooms in self-contained, self catering flats to studio apartments with en-suite kitchens and bathrooms - but the exact nature of each of the halls and their facilities varies from location. Medway campus is short-listed to become a world heritage site.

Partner institutions

The School of Science has links with Imperial College London and the University of Melbourne. The Business School has an exchange programme for doctoral students with Charles University in Prague. Additionally, researchers from Medway School of Pharmacy hold lectures at national universities and international partner universities.The University of Greenwich has strong links with other Higher Education institutions and continues to collaborate in research.

Bird College

Bird Collegemarker is a specialist dance and performing arts college based in Sidcup, Kent. Graduate destinations include West Endmarker and Broadway theatremarker, dance companies, music, film and television. The college's founder Doreen Bird, was awarded an honorary MA by the University in 1999 and Tony Clayton, a former Dean of the University, currently serves as Chairman of the college's Board of Directors.
  • Foundation Degree in Creative Industries: Acting
  • BA (Hons): Dance & Theatre Performance
  • MA by Research: Dance and Musical Theatre


The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts is a specialist drama college based in Wandsworth, London. Graduate destinations include West End theatre, film and television.
  • BA (Hons): Acting
  • MA: Professional Acting
  • Foundation Degree: Stage Management & Technical Theatre


Notable alumni

Amongst the alumni of the University of Greenwich (or other institutions that now fall under that banner) are:

Fortune-West, Reynolds and Bedingfield left their courses prior to graduation.


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