All About UsAllAboutCareers is a social careers information website for everyone who wants to find out more about graduate schemes, apprenticeships, internships and other job-related shenanigans.
Situated in New Cross, southeast London, Goldsmiths College has been part of the University of London since 1904. Originally, it was founded by The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths as a Technical and Recreative Institute in 1891.
The college was recognised as a fully-fledged university in 1988 and today it boasts a student population in excess of 9,000, supported by over 1,500 staff. The faculty is spread across eighteen academic departments, with additional centres and research facilities within each department.
Subjects offered cover arts, computing, humanities and social sciences, with over 400 courses on offer. The college is particularly renowned for its English & Comparative Literature, History, Media & Communications, Psychology and Sociology departments.
Goldsmiths is the place to head to if you have eclectic and unusual interests. For instance, the college offers courses in Curating, Dance Movement Therapy and Art Psychotherapy. Six previous winners of the Turner Prize have been Goldsmiths’ alumni.
Past alumni include the crème de la crème of the modern/contemporary art scene. Indeed, past students include the artists Damien Hirst and Steve McQueen. Goldsmith’s was also home to the iconic fashion designers Mary Quant and Vivienne Westwood and the musicians Alex James and Graham Coxon of Blur and Velvet Underground’s John Cale. Film director Sam Taylor-Wood is a past alumnus, and let’s not forget recent graduate, Katy B.
Goldsmiths is located in New Cross, southeast London, a short, fifteen-minute train ride away from central London. The overall atmosphere is relaxed, multicultural and vibrant. It’s one of very few institutions that foster a strong community relationship, offering the local community access to higher education and learning resources.
The campus is a smooth blend of the old and new: the Rutherford building (RIBA award winner) nestles up to three Grade II listed buildings. The Rutherford is the nerve centre of Goldsmiths, housing the extensive library, computing, multimedia and language learning facilities. There’s also the modern Ben Pimlott building, which houses advanced teaching and studio facilities for the Department of Art, Goldsmiths Digital Studios and the Centre for Cognition, Computation and Culture.
Other landmark facilities include: a 160-seat theatre, three performance studios and studios for still photography, radio, television, animation and editing. Also in the pipeline, is a brand-new Student Centre, opening in September 2011, which will be housed in the Richard Hoggart Building.
Catering venues and shopping establishments on campus operated by the college or Students’ Union include: The Refectory, Loafers, The Green Room, The Stretch and the G Shop. So, all in all, there’s a wide range of food and drinks available on campus.
The G Shop stocks snacks, toiletries, stationary, newspapers and other daily essentials. The Students’ Union also boasts an advice centre, a bank, an ATM, a laundrette, a jukebox, pool tables, vending machines, video games, and a photography booth.
While the campus itself has all the facilities you could wish for, the surrounding areas, New Cross, Deptford, Greenwich, Lewisham, Brockley and Forest Hill, offer a huge variety of opportunities for cultural and social entertainment, from live music, high street shopping and performing arts events to the Royal Observatory and National Maritime Museum in Greenwich.
Housing facilities for Goldsmiths students consist of eight halls of residence and four intercollegiate halls. There is also a host of private housing in surrounding areas.
The college prioritises housing allocations to first year full-time undergraduate students based outside London transport zones, provided applications are submitted before 7th June. However, no guarantee is offered since demand far outstrips supply.
College tenancy periods are set at 40 weeks. The various types of college housing include studio flats, en-suite study bedrooms and standard study bedrooms. Rents include utility and self-catering facilities and weekly rates range from £94 for a standard room to £212 for a twin studio flat.
College halls of residence are Batavia Mews, Chesterman House, Dean House, Loring Hall, McMilan Student Village, Raymont Hall, Surrey House and Surrey House Annexe; all within a commuting distance of 5-20 minutes from the main campus.
Intercollegiate halls of residence are the Garden Halls and the International Hall, all of which provide catered meals (breakfast and dinner in the Garden Halls, breakfast and dinner on weekdays and lunch on weekends at the International Hall).
Prices are calculated on a nightly basis, ranging between £23 and £26 for Garden Halls and around £24 for rooms in the International Hall.
The Hosts International, the University of London Housing Services (ULHS) and the Goldsmiths Students’ Union all offer services to help students find private accommodation.
Full-time undergraduate students enrolling in 2012-13 will be charged tuition fees £9,000.
The cost of living in New Cross and southeast London is comparatively lower than other parts of the capital. However, putting together housing, food, travel, and other living costs, you’ll need to budget around £8,000 per year, if not more.
You can get a pint of beer at The Stretch for £2.20 and there are cheap eats at Brixton’s Dogstar, The Thailand and Monsoon.
Goldsmiths provides a bursary of £1,000 (per year of study) for full-time undergraduate students in receipt of a full or partial government Maintenance Grant or Special Support Grant and have a household net income below £40,000.
Goldsmiths awards scholarships ranging from £500 to £11,395 to students with excellent A-levels or equivalent qualifications, students from schools/colleges located in the London Borough of Lewisham, and undergraduates enrolling for a BSc degree course within the Department of Computing.
There’s plenty nightlife on and off campus. On-campus nightlife is particularly focused around music. The Stretch is the in-house watering hole, hosting weekly favourites such as Club Sandwich Wednesdays, a showcase for new music talent and Film Club nights on Thursdays. The Union also holds four balls per year and runs quiz nights, student shows and plenty of other events.
The surrounding area is well served for pubs and bars. Other attractions include: cinemas, comedy clubs and the Greenwich Theatre and Albany for would-be and established thespians.
Off-campus, the nightlife of London beckons. London is chock-a-block with clubs, many of them running student promotions for those on a budget. There’s also a thriving alternative nightlife scene for those who can’t stomach the typical London clubs.
The extent of Goldsmiths’ sporting facilities might not be as comprehensive as other universities, but the university does have a brand-new gym and fitness centre, ClubPulse. There is also the Loring Sports Ground in Sidcup for cricket, football and rugby; an older ‘Upper Gym’ in the Lockwood Building; and badminton, basketball, netball and tennis courts.
Student clubs and societies cover all kinds of interests, ranging from sport, music, dance and drama to language societies and martial arts. There’s also a monthly student magazine, Smiths, and a student radio station, Wired, to get involved with too.
Community development and volunteering are hugely important in Goldsmiths. The student union runs a volunteer service to help students find volunteering opportunities in a wide variety of local community organisations.
All new students attend the September orientation week, comprising of events organised by each academic department and a general introduction to the college. Goldsmith’s student union runs several freshers’ nights and events, and there is a fresher’s fair where you can get a taste of the various sports clubs, societies and activities on offer.
The Goldsmiths Careers Service is managed by a team of eight staff, providing a variety of career-related services and support to current students, graduates and employers.
The Service also hosts three online portals, covering all kinds of employment, from short placements to permanent, full-time vacancies. The Careers Service can be contacted via telephone, email or you can arrange one-to-one appointments.