Our world-changing philanthropy and global partnerships

This year, we are celebrating our donors and the impact of their giving on student experience and on opportunities for international partners.

Over the last ten years, our donors’ world-changing giving has transformed the Glasgow campus with new, state-of-the-art buildings, including the James McCune Smith Learning Hub, the Advanced Research Centre and the Clarice Pears Building. Donors have funded scholarships that make higher education more accessible to people around the world, and have helped drive innovative research. Philanthropy has created opportunities that have enriched our global partnerships.

Innovative partnerships and collaborations

International philanthropy benefits communities around the world. It also helps to foster collaboration with international partners. In 2016, philanthropist Hatim Karimjee set up a scholarship fund to provide support for Tanzanian students to study at the University of Glasgow on the Masters programme in Conservation Management of African Ecosystems. This programme is run in partnership with the Nelson Mandela African Institution for Science and Technology and other conservation partners in Tanzania. The programme has supported several young Tanzanian scientists and is providing a long-lasting legacy for Tanzanian conservation.

Partnership and collaboration are also at the heart of the University's Mazumdar-Shaw Advanced Research Centre (ARC), as described by Professor Jude Robinson: "The great thing about being at the University of Glasgow is that we have partnerships with institutions and organisations working in other countries. When I’m working in East Africa, I’m collaborating with the University of Nairobi, with the International Livestock Research Institute and charities and organisations within Kenya. Working at the University gives you access to fantastic collaborators and partners who are also working in these areas.

“The funding is very important for us but it’s absolutely critical for our partners. They may not have access to the same sources of funding that we do, they have to make sure that every penny is spent meaningfully and with real impact. That puts a real responsibility on us as well, to make sure that what we’re doing has a real-world impact and that’s what partnerships give us and also what the resources enable us to do."

Improving student experience

Over the last ten years of giving we have improved student experience across the whole campus, and especially with the addition of the James McCune Smith Learning Hub (JMS).

Named for James McCune Smith, a civil rights activist and the first African American to receive a medical degree (from the University of Glasgow in 1837), the JMS is a modern, purpose-built learning and teaching facility. With space for over 2,500 students, it has lockers, group study rooms, cafes and pantry areas. We designed the JMS to improve both student experience and retention and to ensure students always have warm and welcoming surroundings to study in while on campus.

Cutting-edge spaces

The University’s Gilmorehill campus in Glasgow’s West End has undergone a dramatic transformation. The first buildings to open were the James McCune Smith Learning Hub, which offers inclusive study spaces for students, followed by the Mazumdar-Shaw Advanced Research Centre (ARC) which provides cutting-edge research facilities designed to catalyse interdisciplinary work.

In September, we celebrated the opening of the Clarice Pears Building, a new home of the School of Health and Wellbeing. The building brings together colleagues from a range of disciplines including epidemiology, public health and psychology to work together, and it provides space for community groups from across the city. The collaborative environment will support researchers to tackle some of the world’s biggest health challenges and inequalities both in Glasgow and around the globe.

Although the campus developments are undoubtedly impressive, the true impact of the donations we receive goes far beyond what happens here in Glasgow. Aided by these cutting-edge facilities, and empowered by the opportunities that philanthropy provides, our students and researchers have the potential to make a positive impact on their communities and wider society for years to come, helping create solutions to our most pressing global challenges.

Easing financial pressures through scholarships

A world-class education for all students with ability and drive is at the heart of our mission. The cost of education is a barrier to many students realising their potential. Scholarships can ease financial pressures and enable students to enjoy their learning and to innovate through research.

We are proud of our global partnerships and grateful to our donors who support international scholarships.

In partnership with Jakarta Setiabudi International Tbk (JSI), one of the leading investors in the hospitality and tourism sectors in Indonesia, the W M Mann Foundation recently established an international scholarship, which supports an Indonesian postgraduate asters student studying Sustainable Tourism. The chance for a student from Indonesia to study in Scotland has the potential to be life-changing.