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Heriot-Watt University is the eighth oldest higher education institution in the UK and originated as the School of Arts of Edinburgh, the world’s first mechanics institute, in 1821. In 1966 it became a university by Royal Charter. More than a third of Heriot-Watt’s 7,000 Edinburgh campus students are from outside the UK and this international focus is also demonstrated by the 10,000 students from 150 different countries worldwide studying on its international programmes.
The University boasts multiple campuses, with three in Scotland, and one each in Malaysia and Dubai. Heriot-Watt won an award from the Scottish Council of Development and Industry because of its international focus and it also performs well in physical sciences, mathematics, business and management, engineering and the built environment. It won the 'International University of the Year' 2018 award from Times Higher Education.
95% of Heriot-Watt first degree graduates were in employment or further study within six months of graduating and it is the number 1 university in Scotland for the highest paid salaries (Times Higher Education).
Guidance and support for international students is provided by Heriot-Watt University International Students Advice Office. They can help with practical advice such as setting up a UK bank account, driving in the UK, registering with the police for visa renewal, local travel arrangements, the details of embassies and consulates in Edinburgh and much more. The International Student Guide also provides useful information before departure.
The International Students Advice Office at Heriot-Watt also provides airport pickups at the start of each semester, followed by a series of welcome and orientation events.
Heriot-Watt University scores highly for graduate employment, with 80% of students in graduate-level jobs six months after leaving the institution. Following the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, Heriot-Watt rose to 33rd position in the UK, compared with 45th last time. For 3* and 4* ratings, Heriot-Watt is ranked 22nd in the UK and 3rd in Scotland.
Heriot-Watt accommodation service allocates places on campus, as well as helping students to find off-campus accommodation if necessary. The Edinburgh Campus has over 1,600 rooms, with en suite and shared rooms available. There are 200 self-catered rooms and flats on the Scottish Borders Campus, and the University also leases flats off-campus and in the town centre. There is no accommodation on the Orkney Campus, but the accommodation service can assist with finding flats and houses in the town of Stromness.
Heriot-Watt has six campuses overall: the Edinburgh Campus, the Scottish Borders Campus in Galashiels, the Dubai Campus in Dubai Academic City, the Orkney Campus in Stromness in the north of Scotland, a new campus in Putrajaya in Malaysia for MBA students and an association with West London college. The main campus, on the outskirts of Edinburgh is among the most modern in the UK.
Travel links with Heriot-Watt’s Edinburgh and Scottish Borders Campuses are excellent. Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital city, so national and international travel links are well developed. The Scottish Borders Campus is in Galashiels, an attractive market town, just one hour south of Edinburgh by road. Direct air links to and from Edinburgh are growing all the time, as the city continues to develop as a major European financial, business, cultural and tourism hub.
Edinburgh airport is only five minutes by car from the Edinburgh Campus and there are regular direct flights to London (only one hour), Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt, Brussels, Zurich and New York, amongst others.
I sincerely thank SI-UK for getting me accepted to UCL. The MSc in Urban Development and Planning is extremely competitive, but the right guidance provided by SI-UK made my dream of studying at University College London a reality. The services were exceptional from beginning to end.
Rashmi Lakshanya Urban Development and Planning at University College London