Swansea is aiming to use its own title

May 5, 2006

Swansea University's application to use its own title hangs on whether the proposals to reform the University of Wales get the green light. It is expected that Bangor and Aberystwyth, both currently applying for degree-awarding powers, will wish to follow suit.

Swansea has embarked on an ambitious development plan that has made it appear the most likely contender to follow Cardiff and declare itself independent of the University of Wales.

But despite a current bid to use its own title after successfully gaining degree-awarding powers, its vice-chancellor, Richard Davies, is adamant that Swansea will remain a part of the proposed confederation and will continue to award University of Wales degrees.

He said: "Under the proposed changes, it will be independent of the institutions that are formally its members, which means we will be able to use our own title."

Professor Davies's attention is focused more on managing his university's expansion plans, which have recently raised concerns about where to build once its campus reaches its capacity in an estimated 15 years.

With the university doubling its research grant income to £26 million over the past year, it is anticipated that only physical constraints will pose any threat to continued growth.

Discussions over options for the future have spawned some wild suggestions, including moving the university to the neighbouring town of Llanelli or creating islands in Swansea Bay.

But Professor Davies said he had concluded that "it would be madness to relocate".

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