Students on their laptops in the JMS

The James McCune Smith Learning Hub

The James McCune Smith Learning Hub

The £90.6 million James McCune Smith Learning Hub was opened in April 2021. It provides a state of the art learning and the teaching facility with the capacity for more than 2,500 students. The Hub delivers a high-quality conference venue on campus which will have significant benefits for the economy of the City of Glasgow.

‌The new hub is an inspirational and diverse learning space that will help provide our students with the support they need to succeed. 

This flagship development is a creative environment, combining flexible study and social learning space with multi-styled and technology-enabled teaching.  Around the clock access to this building will ensure that it is possible to succeed regardless of background or circumstance.

Inspiring and nurturing our world changers of tomorrow, by providing them with high-quality teaching facilities and the financial support to access them, is at the very heart of the building.


James McCune Smith

The new building is named after James McCune Smith - the first African American to be awarded a medical degree, receiving an MD from the University of Glasgow in 1837.

McCune Smith was born into slavery in 1813, however was freed by New York State's Emancipation Act on July 4, 1827.

Recognised as being intellectually gifted, McCune Smith attended the African Free School in Manhattan where his academic achievements led him to apply to several American universities.

After being denied entry to all due to his race, McCune Smith applied for – and was accepted by – the University of Glasgow’s medical school.

McCune Smith went on to gain three qualifications from the University of Glasgow - a bachelor's degree in 1835, a master’s degree in 1836, and his medical doctorate in 1837.

Upon returning to New York McCune Smith set up medical practice in lower Manhattan and grew to be recognised as a prominent figure in the New York black community and a leading intellectual.‌