Today 27th November 2012 marks an historic milestone; as the University College Plymouth St Mark & St John (Marjon) has been recommended for university title to become the University of St Mark & St John.
Following confirmation from the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS), Acting Principal, Karen Cook said “This is a defining moment in the near 175-year history of the University College Plymouth St Mark & St John. University title marks a fantastic realisation not only for all students, staff, and supporters but also for our local communities and partners, nationally and internationally. However, university title will not mark the end of the journey for Marjon. Rather, it heralds the start of a process which will see us develop further as an innovative model of a high-quality, smaller university.
She adds, “Smaller institutions have long offered greater agility, smaller classes, stronger graduate employment and better retention rates – and we punch above our weight. We boast specialisms in sport; and education, including teacher training, which we have been delivering since our inception in the 1840s. Alongside further specialisms in health, linguistics and languages and journalism and media we are poised to take advantage of the attainment of university title.”
Chair of Governors, Dr Juliet WilliamsCBE said, “I must pay tribute to all of those who have contributed to this achievement. This recommendation heralds a new and exciting chapter for Marjon and the opportunity to realise our ambition to become the exemplar among smaller specialist higher education institutions offering an undeniably student-centric experience. We are already the South West’s ‘hidden gem’ and poised to embark on the road that will enable us to take our rightful position as a national treasure. We have a dynamic and vibrant staff and student community and a caring, sharing tradition that was born with our foundation 175 years ago. We are arguably the third oldest Higher Education Institution in England and no longer will our light be hidden under the proverbial bushel!".
Head of Marketing and Communications, Kerryanne Delbridge said, “This is a landmark occasion for us. Alongside being a highly respected provider of education nearing 175 years, UCP Marjon has already been providing university-level education for many years as a university college, and it is the most fantastic news that we have been recommended for full university title.”
Zak Liddell, Student Union President said, “We are very excited about being recommended for the title of University of St. Mark & St. John. ‘Marjon’, as we call it, is an amazing place to live and study due to the fantastic facilities, excellent teaching and ‘family feel’ amongst both students and staff - this will not change however, now that we no longer will be confused with being a college, we have a better chance of displaying nationally the achievements of this small, yet outstanding institution.’’
The University College began life in London with the foundation of the constituent colleges of St John’s, Battersea, in 1840 and St Mark’s, Chelsea, in 1841. The two colleges combined on the Chelsea site in 1923, and moved from London to Plymouth in 1973. The new University of St Mark & St John will operate as a university from the autumn term 2013, with a joint celebration of 40 years in Plymouth.
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