The University of Portsmouth is a public university in the city of Portsmouth, in the ceremonial county of Hampshire on the south coast of England; it is located mainly on Portsea Island with a population of 205,400, it is the United Kingdom's only island city. The history of the university dates back to 1908, when the Park building opened as a Municipal college and public library. The focus was on chemistry and engineering. The University's roots can be traced back even further to the Portsmouth and Gosport School of Science and the Arts.
The university offers a range of disciplines from Pharmacy, International relations and politics, Mechanical Engineering, Paleontology etc. With courses like Pharmacy appearing in the top 20 in the UK, furthermore 89% of research conducted in Physics and 90% of research in Allied Health Professions,i.e., Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy have been rated as world-leading or internationally excellent in REF2014.
The university describes itself as 'the heart' of Portsmouth, due to its strong commitment to the regional community, and particularly to the city. This commitment is longstanding, at least since the opening of the Municipal College in 1908; 'Our economic, social and cultural contributions range from being one of the largest employers in the city, to the value our highly skilled graduates add in professional roles in our schools, health and justice services, businesses, local authorities and charities.'
The influence of the university is evident and has had a measurable economic impact: it has invested over £180 million in buildings and resources in the last decade and their 25,000 students study, live and spend in the city. Other work adds benefits in different ways, such as: improving the city environment by sharing expertise in urban design; students volunteering in local charities, schools and hospitals; encouraging enterprise and innovation and promoting a greater public understanding of science through lectures, schools visits, events and press comment.
The university continues to expand massively, with the Future Technology Centre opening in 2017, which aims be an 'exciting new space for the next generation of engineers, scientists and designers the centre will house the latest simulation, visualization and modelling equipment', in addition to this the school intends to extend the New Theatre Royal, so that 'students [can] study alongside an active theatre'.
The University is a member of the University Alliance and The Channel Islands Universities Consortium. Notable alumni include Major Tim Peake, Grayson Perry CBE, Simon Armitage, Ben Fogle amongst many more.
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