Students flocking to Ipswich

HIGHER education chiefs have hailed Suffolk's new university a success after it emerged nearly 2,000 students have applied for a place ahead of its September opening.

HIGHER education chiefs have hailed Suffolk's new university a success after it emerged nearly 2,000 students have applied for a place ahead of its September opening.

The figure is almost a 50 per cent rise compared to the number of people who asked for a higher education course at Suffolk College last year - and bosses say it shows how big the demand is for the new £150m campus.

University Campus Suffolk (UCS), which will have its headquarters in Ipswich, is set to open its doors in six months time.

Polly Bridgman, UCS marketing director, said: “In terms of recruitment and student numbers things are progressing extremely well.


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“When we compare the figures to this stage last year we've got a 47% increase in students applying for a place.

“That's just for the Ipswich based campus - there are still more wanting to enrol at the centres at Otley, Bury St Edmunds and Lowestoft.”

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There have been 1,750 applications from students who want to enrol at the Ipswich campus in time for the start of the 2007 term - an increase of 47% on this time last year when 1,200 students applied for higher education places at Suffolk College.

The subjects that are proving particularly popular are computer game design, sports science, criminology and health related courses, she added.

It had been feared that the killings of five Ipswich prostitutes in December would damage the image of the town.

But Miss Bridgman said: “The events of December don't seem to have had a negative effect. People are obviously a little more aware of where Suffolk and Ipswich are but they are still keen to come and our recruitment fairs for 2008 have had a lot of positive feedback.

“Its important now that Ipswich and the rest of the county are in the spotlight for the right reasons and we hope very much that we can help to rebuild their good image.”

UCS is hoping to attract up to 4,000 students at its learning centres across the county by the time it opens its doors in September, with the number expected to almost double by 2014.

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