UCL News


Bright Futures

29 July 2005

UCL alumni are on target to contribute a record amount in the 2005 student telephone campaign for UCL Futures, which generates much-needed scholarships for UCL students, and grants for innovative UCL projects that would otherwise not come to fruition.

Yves Blais

This year 23 students from all over UCL have come together to encourage their forerunners to help today's students. The financial climate for both institutions and students has undoubtedly changed over the last few years, and alumni are demonstrating their generosity by donating to UCL through UCL Futures.

UCL Futures provides scholarships for UCL students, as well as enabling many and varied projects that benefit the UCL community. Recent projects include the first-ever mathematics and physical sciences summer school, and a women's VIII rowing boat for the Royal Free & University College Medical School (RUMS) Boat Club.

Mr Alex Parker (Medical School 5), RUMS Boat Club President, said: "This is a resounding commitment from UCL to our club and will allow us to develop in size, profile and achievement. It is also a great boost to our own alumni program in demonstrating UCL's long-term commitment to RUMS Boat Club. Despite having to share boats, our women have gained great success over the past few years and I'm confident this new purchase will facilitate even more success and also raise the profile of rowing at UCL generally. This investment will allow more people the opportunity to row and help increase our membership from which teams can be selected."

Approaching the end of his degree, Mr Yves Blais (Archaeology 3) became a caller in order to give something back to UCL before he graduated. "When I heard about student calling, I thought it would be a good opportunity to say 'thank-you' for the great time I've had at UCL and help other students. I love the social side of UCL, its cultural diversity and there is a good staff-student relationship. Budgeting is such a huge factor for students, especially in London, and I know a few people who have benefited from the hardship scholarships."

He added: "When you start chatting to alumni, you get a real high and you can develop a strong rapport with them. It's taught me about UCL and how it's changed - not so long ago there were only 3,000 students, but UCL has managed to retain a strong sense of community, which is amazing considering its size and location. Tuition fees have had a lot of press coverage, so a lot of the alumni I have spoken to are aware of the difficulties students are facing. I've definitely found the experience worthwhile. I was aware of the hardship scholarships, but I didn't realise how important donations from alumni are."

UCL Futures builds on the successes of ten years of the UCL Friends Programme and a half-century of the Friends' Trust. It is part of Advancing London's Global University - the Campaign for UCL, the largest-ever fundraising campaign at a UK university. The campaign aims to raise £300 million over the next decade, to match the £300 million already raised since the early 1990s through philanthropic support from UCL's alumni, staff and friends, and donations from charitable foundations and industry.

To find out more use the link below.

The Campaign for UCL