University of Leicester

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University of Leicester

The University was founded as Leicestershire and Rutland University College in 1921. The site for the University was donated by a local textile manufacturer, Thomas Fielding Johnson, in order to create a living memorial for those who lost their lives in First World War. This is reflected in the University’s motto Ut Vitam Habeant – ‘so that they may have life’.

Students were first admitted to the college in 1921. In 1927, after it became University College, Leicester, students sat the examinations for external degrees of the University of London. In 1957 the college was granted its Royal Charter, and has since then had the status of a University with the right to award its own degrees. The University won the first ever series of University Challenge, in 1963.

At Leicester we think that high quality research and excellent teaching are not only complementary, they’re inseparable. We are constantly finding new ways of being a leading university, and have done so since we were founded as a University College in 1921. 

We are the only university to win 7 consecutive Times Higher Awards. In awarding us ‘University of the Year’, Times Higher Education applauded Leicester’s very different approach, describing us as “elite without being elitist”.

We were proud to be described as elite. But we were equally as proud to be described as a university that is inclusive and accessible in its academic culture.

Leicester is consistently one of the most socially inclusive of the UK’s top 20 universities

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