|School of Science and Art (1891) |
Wycombe Technical Institute (1920)
High Wycombe College of Technology and Art (1961)
Buckinghamshire College of Higher Education (1975)
Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College (1999)
|Motto||Latin: Arte et industria|
Motto in English
|By Art and Industry|
|Established||2007 – gained university status |
1891 – Science and Art School
Buckinghamshire New University (BNU) is a public university in Buckinghamshire, England, with campuses in High Wycombe, Aylesbury, Uxbridge and Great Missenden. The institution dates from 1891, when it was founded as the School of Science and Art, and has since then has variously been known as Wycombe Technical Institute, High Wycombe College of Technology and Art and the Buckinghamshire College of Higher Education. It was a university college from 1999 until 2007, when its application for university status was accepted.
The University is a member of the GuildHE.
Founded in 1891 as the School of Science and Art, it was initially established with public funds raised from a tax on beer and spirits and set about providing evening classes to residents of High Wycombe and the local area.
After World War I, it was renamed the Wycombe Technical Institute, forging close links with local crafts such as furniture making and cabinetry and helping to provide skills to injured war veterans in order that they might find work in local industries.
Further building took place after World War II, and on 6 May 1963 the new facilities were officially opened by the Minister of Education, Sir Edward Boyle. A new change of name, the High Wycombe College of Technology and Art accompanied this expansion.
In 1975 High Wycombe College of Art and Technology merged with the Newland Park College of Education in Chalfont St Giles, and was renamed the Buckinghamshire College of Higher Education. In the same decade Missenden Abbey, a former Augustinian monastery founded in 1133, was acquired, and in May 1988 it was officially opened as a management centre by Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester.
In March 1999 it was awarded University College status by the government, changing its name once again to Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College. Around this time the Which University guide described it as a "concrete labyrinth", which was unlikely to be "bringing home architectural awards".
In 2007 it changed its name again, this time from "Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College" to its current name of "Buckinghamshire New University" ("Bucks") when its application for university status was approved by the Privy Council. The University now uses the abbreviation 'BNU' as its shortened identifier rather than 'Bucks'. This change coincided with the 2021 University rebrand.
Alternative names such as 'University of Wycombe', 'Wycombe University', 'University of High Wycombe', 'High Wycombe University', 'University of Buckinghamshire' and 'Buckinghamshire Chilterns University' were rejected. The chosen name was swiftly attacked by the University of Buckingham for using the county name. Critics[who?] have argued that the 'New' element of the university's name will look out of place in the long-term.
Bucks had ambitious plans to consolidate its divided campuses into a purpose-built site near to Hughenden Park in High Wycombe on land previously owned by CompAir. While these plans fell through, the University changed plans to renovate and enlarge the main campus as well as consolidate both the Wellesbourne and Chalfont campuses onto the High Wycombe site. Additionally new halls of residence have been built at the Hughenden Park site.
The University operates over four campuses: High Wycombe Campus (previously belonging to the High Wycombe College of Art and Technology), since 2009 a site in Uxbridge in the London Borough of Hillingdon, a thriving base for nursing students and applied healthcare research, a campus in Aylesbury and a site known as Missenden Abbey which is also a conference centre.
The University undertook a major development of the High Wycombe Campus with a large structure, known as the Gateway Building, being built onto the front of the existing building. It won a RIBA award in 2010.
A state-of-the-art complex, the Gateway offers a rich mix of commercial-standard facilities, including a sports/events hall, fitness centre and performance lab, dance and drama studios, sound design labs, music recording studios and video production suites, a modern integrated learning resources centre, a cafe and meeting and conference rooms. It also has green screen facilities and a motion capture system.
There is a range of accommodation at Bucks New University including halls of residence, managed houses and the student village:
|Times / Sunday Times (2022)||119|
|British Government assessment|
|Teaching Excellence Framework||Silver |
In November 2013 it was ranked 12th in the UK by the Huffington Post in a list of creative universities. It was also included in a list of the top 14 creative universities in the UK by The Daily Telegraph in December 2013. Domestically, the university is ranked 113 out of 130 universities (Complete), 92 out of 121 universities (Guardian), 113 out of 131 (Times / Sunday Times).
The University overall vision is to be an inclusive environment ‘that inspires learning, develops potential, widens participation and ambitiously transforms lives.’ They strive to do this by ensuring they create an environment ‘which is not only free from any form of discrimination but actively celebrates and values diversity.’
For the most recent 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), the grading "internationally excellent" or "world leading" was for some submissions in the areas Allied Health Professions, Business and Management Studies, Sport and Exercise Sciences, Art and Design.
The university runs several specialist courses.
The Air Transport with Commercial Pilot Training is a course offering students the opportunity to study for a professional pilot's licence whilst undertaking university studies in areas such as globalisation of the air transport industry and health safety and security for airlines and airports. Many former students (including Virgin Atlantic deputy chief pilot David Brooks) have gone on to attain jobs as pilots in flying schools, charter companies and airlines around the world including Susi Air, Cathay Pacific, Qatar, BMI and Ryanair.
Although the Air Transport with Commercial Pilot Training course aims to provide guidance and support to students with the aim of becoming commercial pilots, many students are inspired by various modules of the course and pursue careers in other areas within the air transport industry. In 2009 graduate Antony Coe set up his own business DexFix computer repairs. Following this and in conjunction with his studies in Health safety and security for airlines and airports Coe now provides contract services to the counter terrorism task forces worldwide.
The university offers several other innovative courses such as Music Management and Film and Television Production. The university also offers a course in Animation and Visual Effects, launched in September 2013.
Bucks New University, in partnership with the UK's largest non-metropolitan Police service Thames Valley Police, offers a Degree Apprenticeship for new Police entrants.
Trevor Baylis was a frequent guest lecturer, and was present at a 2004 graduation ceremony and graduate degree show; he received an honorary degree from the University in 2007, and was present at the official opening of the Gateway building in 2010.
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