Universities Week - A celebration of Aberystwyth University

Universities Week 13-19 June 2011

Universities Week sees higher education institutions around the country taking part in a variety of local, regional and national activities designed to demonstrate the extraordinary, life-changing work of universities. Aberystwyth University has a number of events planned leading up to, during and after the week of 13th June which showcase the diverse nature of its work and stakeholders.

Aberystwyth University Vice Chancellor, Professor Noel Lloyd commented:

In Universities Week we celebrate the wide range of contributions that universities make to so many aspects of life. They continue to have a deep impact economically, culturally and socially.

We are important locally and regionally, we have a valuable part to play in the national life of Wales and our contributions to policy development are particularly valuable; but we are also international organisations, with students from a wide range of countries enriching our society, and we must be internationally recognised to fulfil our responsibilities locally and nationally.

Alex Jones, a presenter on The One Show, BBC said:

I have very fond memories of my days at Aberystwyth University. Based within a relatively small geographical area it is inevitable that the boundaries between university and town become blurred and I believe this is what makes it so special. Apart from the obvious academic benefits you gain from attending such an institution, university life is invaluable in helping you become more independent and understand who you are as a person. It definitely provided me with good grounding for my career and my life in general.

Universities Week 2011 will focus on five key themes including the value universities bring to their communities and to local businesses and how the research currently underway will benefit UK society in 20 years' time. These themes are reflected in the events taking place, including:


06 June 2011 - 15 July 2011

Mobile Apps Challenge

The 'Apps Challenge' has two competition categories to enter, with prizes for the most inventive and commercially promising app/app idea.

06 June 2011 - 10 June 2011

Aberystwyth University Business Start-Up Week

Penglais Campus and Loveden House, Bridge St

As well as a package of essential business skills training, the Business Start-up week provides individuals with a fantastic networking opportunity to meet likeminded entrepreneurs and build a support network to draw on when taking their business idea forward.

13 June 2011 - 17 June 2011

Introduction to stone lithography

School of Art, Buarth Mawr

This workshop includes practical hands-on experience, introductory talks and opportunity to view prints from the University of Aberystwyth Collection.

16 June 2011

Six Slovak Poets

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

An Arc Publications Anthology is Launched in Wales. Two of the collection's contributors are invited to read alongside poet, writer and critic Jasmine Donahaye.

The collection includes work by a generation who started publishing in the 1960s, who lived through the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 and saw the 1993 division of the country give birth to today's Slovak Republic.

17 June 2011

DS6: Digital Storytelling Festival

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

An opportunity to share experiences, explore new creative ideas and discuss the latest technological developments in digital storytelling.

18 June 2011

MidMad free music festival

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

The best day in the musical calendar at the Arts Centre is back and it's still free! Live bands, barbeque, bars, real ales, activities and (hopefully) lots of sunshine.

20 June 2011

OPAN Launch Event: The Age Agenda in Aberystwyth

International Politics Main Hall, Aberystwyth University

Older People & Ageing Research & Development Network (OPAN Cymru) launch at Aberystwyth University, focusing on the challenges of ageing in the 21st century.

21 June 2011

Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

The group sing a capella in a joyously energetic performance that combines loud powerful choruses with softer, almost whispering chants where voices blend harmoniously, and tightly-choreographed dance moves.

22 June 2011

Table Manners

Aberystwyth Arts Centre

Production of Alan Aykbourn play by theatre company, WWT Productions, made up of former students from the TFTS department.

Did you know…?

  • There are 7400 undergraduates studying full-time at Aberystwyth University. 36% of the students come from Wales, 44% come from England, 1% from Northern Ireland and Scotland, with 12% from Europe and 7% from the rest of the world
  • The courses that have been taught ever since the University was established in 1872 include English, French, German, Geography, History and Mathematics.
  • Of full-time undergraduates, males represent 51.6% and females 48.4%.
  • Between May 2010 and May 2011, the University's food outlets sold 21,971 paninis, 14,983 regular coffees, 26,658 vegetarian option meals, 7761 pieces of toast and 6939 pieces of fruit.
  • Over 50% of the undergraduate students achieve a 2:1 degree or higher.
  • The University has an alumni community of 62,654 2,950 have inter-alumni relationships recorded (partners, ex-partners and widow/widower).
  • Aberystwyth University is ranked with the 3rd best student satisfaction score in the UK; the highest in Wales with an overall student satisfaction score of 92%.
  • The first use of electric lighting in the town was in 1890 at the University's Physics Department.
  • The most borrowed title according to Library Services is Law of trusts and equitable obligations by Robert A Pearce, John Stevens, Warren Barr; borrowed 131 times in 2010/11.
  • Around 12,000 people live in and around Aberystwyth. This number increases to about 20,000 when the full-time students live there during term time.
  • The University has 981 alumni listed who work or who have worked for the University. The actual figure is much higher but staff data wasn't always routinely collected.
  • Famous alumni of Aberystwyth include:
    • HRH Prince Charles, studied Welsh and Welsh History here in 1969
    • HRH Muhriz Tuanku Munawir (ruler of the Malaysian state of Negeri Sembilan) graduated in Law 1970
    • Rhodri Meilir, actor (Alfie Butts in BBC TVs My Family) graduated in Drama in 2000
    • Melanie Walters, actress (Gwen in Gavin and Stacey) graduated in Drama in 1983
    • Alex Jones, BBC TV presenter for The One Show graduated in Drama in 1998
    • Sharon Maguire (Director, Bridget Jones Diary) graduated in English and Drama in 1982
    • Belinda Earl (Chief Executive, Jaeger) graduated in Economics in 1983
    • Tom Singh (Founder, New Look) graduated in International Politics and Geography in 1970
    • Catherine Bishop: Rower, Silver medal in 2004 Olympics, MPhil International Politics 2005
    • The Right Honourable Carwyn Jones, First Minister of Wales, graduated in Law in 1988

To learn more about the week's activities please visit the University's news pages which will be regularly updated during the week and also the Universities Week website for news from across the UK.