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Research student claims £500 New to UCL jackpot as NSS 2019 gets underway

16 January 2019

George Thomas, a Neuroscience PhD student, has won the 2018 New to UCL jackpot. Final year undergraduates, meanwhile, can now earn extra funds for their department when they provide feedback on their course through the National Student Survey.

Prize winner

The New to UCL 2018 survey saw over 7,600 students across undergraduate, postgraduate taught and research levels provide feedback on the experience of starting their studies at UCL, as well as detailing the reasons they chose their course and UCL.

Everyone who completed the survey was entered into a prize draw, and George Thomas, a PhD student in Neuroscience won this year’s £500 cash jackpot.

George’s highlights at UCL have included the opportunities he has had to meet “really amazing academics” within his department, and the great facilities at UCL.

He said that he’s noticed how things are changing at UCL since he was first an undergraduate and Master’s degree student here. For example the Natural Sciences department is “way more structured” than before, and he’s really looking forward to visiting the New Student Centre once it opens on Monday 18 February.

See more examples of changes at UCL

George plans to spend the jackpot on a trip to Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, which looks “really beautiful”. When he’s on-campus, however, he says the best places to study are “the oak rooms in the library’s English and History sections”.

New to UCL

The New to UCL survey helps UCL make improvements where they are most needed. Most students were pleased with their welcome, with 94% of students reporting that they are satisfied with the experience of arrival at UCL, which marks a slight increase from last year.

View the rest of the headline results (UCL log-in required).

Students were particularly appreciative of the efforts made by staff at a departmental level, with 96% of undergraduate and postgraduate students agreeing that ‘staff in my department have made me feel welcome’. This rose to 98% among research students assessing their department or research unit.

NSS live photo

National Student Survey

The latest opportunity for students to give feedback is the National Student Survey (NSS), which is open now for final-year undergraduates. Once again an incentive is in place, and departments where over 70% of eligible students complete the survey can receive up to £1,500 in additional funds to spend in consultation with students. In previous years, departments have spent the NSS incentive money on end-of-term socials, new equipment or donations to student societies.

Find out more about the NSS