The founding college of an international education movement, UWC Atlantic College, has received a USD $1million donation to help fund its provision of scholarships to refugees and students from some of the poorest and most conflict-stricken areas of the globe.
The six figure donation was made by the Davis UWC IMPACT Programme, which was established by American philanthropist and UWC Patron, Shelby Davis.
The funds will now be used by UWC Atlantic College to facilitate the scholarships and financial support it provides to over half of its international student body. Many of those students have travelled to the UK from areas of extreme conflict, including Syria, South Sudan and the Gaza Strip.
Each year, the UWC Atlantic College brings together around international 350 students, who represent over 90 nationalities, to live and study together at its residential St. Donat’s Castle campus in Llantwit Major, South Wales.
The creation of the $15 million IMPACT Programme by Mr Davis, is an acknowledgement of the UWC’s internationally recognised education model, and its governing mission of using education as a force for a more peaceful and sustainable world.
Under the programme, each of the UWC movement’s 15 schools and colleges across the globe were given the opportunity to access up to $1million of match funding to provide places to students based on merit, irrespective of their background. Charitable donations from alumni and supporters of each UWC institution have been matched dollar for dollar, effectively doubling contributions.
The college continues to further influence and enhance the [International Baccalaureate's] academic provisions, leading the way with the development of the Atlantic Diploma and its pioneering co-curricular programme
Speaking of the $1million donation and the support the college received to make it a reality, Gerry Holden, caretaker Principal of UWC Atlantic College, said: “We thank Shelby Davis for his vision and continued support for our mission to make education a force for peace and a sustainable future. It is our belief that by living and learning together, our young adults are able to look past their differences to find real understanding and a shared desire to promote peace in their home nations.
“This match funding, and all of the donations that have allowed us to secure it, represents more than a financial contribution; they have ensured that deserving students, some from the world’s most deprived and war-torn regions, will benefit from the gift of education and the potential to affect real change in our world.”
In addition to being the founding college of the global UWC education movement, it is recognised for playing a leading role in the creation of the International Baccalaureate (IB). The college continues to further influence and enhance the IB’s academic provisions, leading the way with the development of the Atlantic Diploma and its pioneering co-curricular programme. This allows students to divide their time equally between their academic studies and an array experiential learning activities, such as working with local refugee charities and volunteering their time to local community groups and sustainable projects.
UWC Atlantic College is an international residential sixth form college based in Llantwit Major, South Wales. The academic programme is the International Baccalaureate Diploma, which the college helped to develop. It is the founding college of the UWC movement and was the first school in the UK to follow an international curriculum. The independently run college receives no subsidy from the UK government. However, approximately 55% of its students receive some financial support, enabling a diverse student body.
UWC Atlantic College is attended by approximately 350 students from more than 90 countries, who are selected on personal merit and potential – regardless of race, religion, cultural or socio-economic background. Students follow a broad and balanced curriculum that is academically rigorous and embodies the school’s mission, preparing them for a life of service and leadership.
A core component of the UWC ethos is a commitment to community service; its service programme involves students engaged in a service or activity that supports other members of the college or local community.