University Profile: University of Reading
League Table Ranking 2016: 25
Number of Students: 13,500, of which 70% are undergraduate and 30% postgraduate
Location: South East England, about 40 miles from Central London
The University of Reading celebrates the 90th anniversary of its Royal Charter – the formal founding of the University – in 2016, although its roots go way back to 1860, when the School of Art was established (followed by the School of Science in 1870) as an extension college of the University of Oxford. Reading was the only University to be awarded a charter between the two World Wars. The main Whiteknights campus of the University was bought from a Marquess in 1947, and, in 2008, Henley Business School – one of the world’s top 50 business schools – was incorporated. Today, particular research strengths include food, health, environment and heritage and, in 2013, the Meteorological Department won the Regius Professorship award, attaining worldwide recognition for its research. Graduates have gone on to forge exceptional careers in the fields of sport, business, entrepreneurship, arts, and science, with notable alumni including Wilfred Owen, Jamie Cullum, James Cracknell and Nick Candy.
Ranked in the top 1% of universities worldwide, Reading offers first-class teaching and research opportunities to its undergraduate and postgraduate community. The University boasts a healthy mix of domestic and overseas students, with around 90% enrolled full time. Over 350 courses are on offer at the University of Reading, with many students opting for joint degrees in two closely related subjects. The majority of the programs also incorporate an option to study abroad at one of the various partner institutions of the University.
A wide range of accommodation options are provided by the University of Reading, from short to long term lets, catered to self-catered halls, traditional college style quads to modern purpose-built blocks, and a variety of residential rooms. All eligible first year students are guaranteed a place in halls of residence. Following recent reviews, the University has undertaken extensive refurbishment of its halls to ensure full integration of facilities such as catering, social and welfare in its hub areas.
Apart from accommodation, Reading offers a wide range of facilities to its students across its three award-winning campuses. The main campus, Whiteknights, is set in 130 hectares of beautiful parkland and, in 2014, was included in the Green Flag People’s Choice Award for green spaces at number six; the only university campus to appear in the top ten. Facilities on campus include the Students’ Union, large central library, an extensive range of food and drink options, a Blackwells bookshop, Korean food store, hairdresser, bank, free Wi-Fi, and even two on-site museums (the Cole Museum of zoology and the Ure Museum of Greek archaeology). University health services and a dental surgery are also available within walking distance. At night, chaperone services are provided by the University to ensure the safety and security of students within the campus.
Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU) is considered one of the top ten Students’ Unions in the country. It helps to provide a very well balanced experience for students by facilitating over 100 societies, nearly 50 sports clubs, volunteering projects, a newspaper, radio station, and even a web based TV channel. The Whiteknights campus of the University provides a lush green and safe environment to its students, and houses well known cafes, bars, nightclubs, food stores, bookshops, a letting agency, and a hairdresser. 3sixty – the Students’ Union nightclub – is the largest late-night venue in Reading and one of the best student clubs in the country. Hosting conferences, comedians and live bands, as well as club nights, Pendulum, Zane Lowe, Professor Green and Tinie Tempah are amongst the acts who have performed here.
My Personal Statement Verdict: 3.5/5
Content was accurate at the time of compilation.