Imperial College

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Standing out as one of the more unique higher education institutions in the UK, Imperial College London focusses purely on Science, Engineering, Medicine and Business.

Adding to its prestige as a top 10 worldwide university (it was ranked 8th in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2018), its staff and alumni include 15 Nobel laureates, three Fields Medallists, 74 Fellows of the Royal Society, 84 Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering and 85 Fellows of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

It’s an impressive standing for the South Kensington-based institute. This area of the English capital is known as ‘Albertopolis’, the brainchild of Prince Albert and Sir Henry Cole, whose 19th century vision was for an area where science and the arts would come together.

So, it is quite fitting that Imperial’s neighbours went on to include a number of world-leading cultural organisations including the Science, Natural History and Victoria and Albert museums, the Royal Colleges of Art and Music, and the English National Ballet. The Royal Albert Hall also takes pride of place in the area and plays host to Imperial’s graduation ceremonies.

These ceremonies have seen the likes of epidemiologist Sir Roy M Anderson, who mathematically modelled the spread of Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease and AIDS, and Dame Mary Archer, the British scientist who specialised in solar power conversion, graduate from the institution.

Other notable alumni include Nobel laureate chemist Geoffrey Wilkinson, Physician Alexander Fleming, writer H.G. Wells and Queen guitarist Brian May.

As a forward-thinking institution, Imperial launched its Strategy 2015–2020 which set out how it will be a source of new solutions, a contributor to a better future, a trusted partner and a shining example of what a global university should look like. In the strategy, Imperial promises to focus its research on four themes: discovery and the natural world, engineering novel solutions, health and wellbeing, and leading the data revolution.

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Launching the strategy, its President Professor Alice P Gast, states: “Global research-driven universities like Imperial College London have a central role in helping humanity address changes and challenges by making discoveries, educating leaders and developing innovations that benefit society. Yet these universities will need to change to contribute to this future.”

The institution’s bold plan is being delivered from its campus in South Kensington, which sits within 10 minutes’ walk of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens and close to Kensington Palace and Gardens, National Art Library, Harrods Mall, and the Brompton Oratory. The main campus is well served by three Tube lines and many bus routes.

Imperial also has a number of other campuses across London and a campus in the village of Sunninghill near Ascot, including Charing Cross Campus, Hammersmith; Hammersmith Hospital; Chelsea and Westminster Campus; Hammersmith Campus, East Acton; Royal Brompton Campus, Chelsea; St Mary's Campus, Paddington and Silwood Park.

It is also developing a second major campus in the White City area of London. The White City Campus innovation hub will house new research facilities, and space for spin-off entrepreneurial companies.