29 September 2008
Sheffield shortlisted for two national awards
The University of Sheffield was nominated for two prestigious national awards in recognition of its continued support for international students and for offering a great student experience.
The Outstanding Support for Overseas Students award recognises the support offered by a university to its international students throughout their time in the UK. The Best Student Experience award recognises universities´ outstanding contributions to the learning experience.
The awards are just two of many which were presented by Times Higher Education at a ceremony in London on Thursday 23 October 2008.
For the Outstanding Support for Overseas Students award, the University was shortlisted via an independent survey that asked international students to rate their satisfaction in a number of categories. Students were questioned in a range of areas including, visa advice, IT support, faith provision and the students´ union. The top six institutions in the country were then shortlisted for the award based on these ratings.
On arrival in Sheffield, international students participate in an orientation week including day trips, an information fair and the opportunity to meet with staff across the University. Throughout the academic year, students are supported in their academic departments and by the University´s student support services.
As well as professional services offered, the University of Sheffield´s Union of Students is one of only seven in the country that has a dedicated full time International Officer and International Students´ Committee who provide a range of activities and programmes to support international students throughout the year. These include drop in sessions, a range of sports including a football and a badminton league, and the Give it a Go programme which allows students to experience anything from belly dancing to sushi making.
The Best Student Experience award is based on a student survey assessing academic reputation, teaching, social life and facilities of their institutions. At Sheffield, students can expect a high level of teaching from academics with a reputation for excellence. The University is constantly investing in its campus, and in the last four years has seen the opening of the award winning University Health Centre and the Information Commons, a £23 million learning resource centre.
The University also offers numerous extra-curricular activities. Students can benefit from a range of sporting facilities at Sheffield, including a Matrix Bouldering Wall and the S10 health fitness centre. The University of Sheffield´s Union of Students, recognised as the best Students´ Union in the country, has a packed weekly entertainment programme alongside the Student Advice Centre offering support to its students on a range of problems. The award-winning SheffieldVolunteering, based at the Union of Students, also has a variety of projects to encourage students to give something back to the local community.
Jane Chafer, Director of Student Recruitment, Admissions and Marketing, said: "We are delighted to have been shortlisted for these two awards. At Sheffield, we are proud of our multicultural campus. We value the individuality of our students and work hard to maintain an environment that nurtures talent and encourages personal development. It is rewarding to know that it is our students who have recognised us for this award and I hope students starting their studies at Sheffield this year are excited about joining us for their own Sheffield experience."
Andrew West, Director of Student Services, added: "It is gratifying to know how highly our students rate their experience and recognise the quality of the services provided by our staff and the Union of Students. We´ve always felt that it is important to ensure that our students get the best possible experience during their studies with us here at Sheffield. The results of the two surveys are great news for any prospective students thinking about coming to Sheffield."