UCL: London's global university

  • First English university to admit women as full degree students
  • First English university to admit students of all beliefs and ethnicities
  • 210 clubs and societies with 18,000 memberships sold
  • 49% of the student body volunteer on external community projects (2011-12)
  • Students from 150 countries and 100 staff nationalities
  • 20% of students study abroad as part of their degree
  • 21 modern languages taught at UCL
  • Central London location

Ambitious, idealistic and committed to ethical and socially responsible behaviour

We want our students to aim high - but we also want them to understand and respect the impact that their decisions and actions have on those around them. We belive that a UCL education encourages students to see themslves as part of a larger community, to work for the good of others, as well as for their own personal good, and to prioritise ethical and responsible choices.

Whether through volunteering, clubs and societies or student activitism, ethical engagement is a critical part of life for students both during and after their time at UCL.

UCL has a well-established culture of volunteering


Annuallly, some 900 students participate in activities through the Volunteering Services Unit (VSU), including organisign football tournaments for homeless people, getting involved with campaigning organisations, teaching computer skills to local elderly people, or co-ordinating fundraising events for disability charities.

The VSU also runs and Innovations Programme which supports students to develop their own proposals for new community programmes. Student-led projects past and present have included:

  • the Refugee project, which brings UCL volunteers together with refugees and asylum seekers to build confidence through mentoring and group activities;
  • the Physics Outreach project, which brings exciting university-level physics experiments into secondary schools to challenge perceptions of the subject;
  • the Languages Skills Pool, which provides pro bono translation and interpreting services for charities across London.

All of the the Innovations Programme projects have been conceived of, designed, developed and implemented by UCL students.

Learn more

UCL students apply their classroom learning to make a difference in the world


The UCL Student Human Rights Programme is a student-led, non-profit organisation which has been making headlines for its research report on human rights in the UK over the last ten years.

"The UCL Student Human Rights Programme (UCL SHRP) is a dynamic, proactive human rights organisation. We are led by students and advised by human rights academics and professionals, with members from all walks of life. The group seeks to foster a vibrant culture of human rights within UCL and wider communities by initiating awareness, instigating debate and inspirating action. Crossing disciplines is the way forward: we cannot take just one route towards establishing a human rights cultures." Jonathan Butterworth, President UCL SHRP 2008-9

Within a year of its foundation, the UCL SHRP was organising lectures, panel discussions, a research group and a moot competition, and was publishing its own journal.

Similar entrepreneurial activity is underway in many of UCL's student societies, including the UCL branches of Engineers and People and Planet.

Learn more

Page last modified on 27 feb 13 10:55