MALAYSIANS studying at Manchester University or at Umist (University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology) can choose to graduate with a degree bearing the name of either university or the single merged institution which will come into being in September.
This flexibility would also apply to students for the next academic intake in September, Manchester University Vice-Chancellor Sir Martin Harris said in a letter to all applicants.
Certificates from the single university, which will be named by July, will make reference to the fact that it was formed by merging Manchester University and Umist.
Last week, both universities gave the final approval to merge into one of Britain’s biggest academic institutions, which has a better position to compete on a global scale for students and research grants.
The new university will have a student population of some 30,000 and a combined turnover of £500mil (RM3bil). At present, Manchester has 213 Malaysian students and Umist 164.
Academics at both universities had expressed concern about the likely affects of the merger, but a six-month review of the costs and benefits was positive and the proposal was given a further boost of £82mil (RM500mil) in public funding.
“Both Manchester University and Umist enjoy high ranking in all league tables and we expect that the creation of the single university will strengthen our position yet further,” Harris said.
He added that those planning “to enter in 2003 or 2004 can be assured that our exci-ting plans for the future will not affect the basis” on which their application is being considered.
“The programme that you have applied for will run as described in the undergraduate prospectus. There will be no disruption to your studies and the number of students supervised by each member of staff will be maintained.”
Harris said both universities, situated on neighbouring campuses, had been working closely for many years, such as developing a number of joint courses and sharing many student facilities.