The University of New South Wales (UNSW; branded as UNSW Sydney) is an Australian public research university located in the Sydney suburb of Kensington. Established in 1949, it is ranked 3rd in Australia, 45th in the world, and 1st in New South Wales according to the 2017 QS World University Rankings.
The university comprises nine faculties, through which it offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees. The main campus is located on a 38-hectare (94-acre) site in the Sydney suburb of Kensington, 7km (about 4.3 miles) from the Sydney central business district. The creative arts faculty, UNSW Art & Design, is located in Paddington, UNSW Canberra is located at the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra and sub-campuses are located in the Sydney CBD, the suburbs of Randwick and Coogee. Research stations are located throughout the state of New South Wales.
UNSW is one of the founding members of the Group of Eight, a coalition of Australian research-intensive universities, and of Universitas 21, a global network of research universities. It has international exchange and research partnerships with over 200 universities around the world.
The origins of the university can be traced to the Sydney Mechanics' School of Arts established in 1833 and the Sydney Technical College established in 1878. These institutions were established to meet the growing demand for capabilities in new technologies as the New South Wales economy shifted from its pastoral base to industries fueled by the industrial age.
The idea of founding the university originated from the crisis demands of World War II, during which the nation's attention was drawn to the critical role that science and technology played in transforming an agricultural society into a modern and industrial one. The post-war Labor government of New South Wales recognised the increasing need to have a university specialised in training high-quality engineers and technology-related professionals in numbers beyond that of the capacity and characteristics of the existing University of Sydney. This led to the proposal to establish the Institute of Technology, submitted by the then New South Wales Minister for Education Bob Heffron, accepted on 9 July 1946.
The university, originally named the "New South Wales University of Technology", gained its statutory status through the enactment of the New South Wales University of Technology Act 1949 (NSW) by the Parliament of New South Wales in Sydney in 1949.
In March 1948, classes commenced with a first intake of 46 students pursuing programs including civil engineering, mechanical engineering, mining engineering and electrical engineering. At that time the thesis programs were innovative. Each course embodied a specified and substantial period of practical training in the relevant industry. It was also unprecedented for tertiary institutions at that time to include compulsory instruction in humanities.
Initially, the university operated from the inner Sydney Technical College city campus in Ultimo. However, in 1951, the Parliament of New South Wales passed the New South Wales University of Technology (Construction) Act 1951 (NSW) to provide funding and allow buildings to be erected at the Kensington site where the university is now located.
In 1958, the university's name was changed to the "University of New South Wales" to reflect its transformation from a technology-based institution to a generalist university. In 1960, it established faculties of arts and medicine and shortly after decided to add the Faculty of Law, which came into being in 1971.
The university's first director was Arthur Denning (1949–1952), who made important contributions to founding the university. In 1953, he was replaced by Philip Baxter, who continued as vice-chancellor when this position's title was changed in 1955. Baxter's dynamic, if authoritarian, management was central to the university's first 20 years. His visionary, but at times controversial, energies saw the university grow from a handful to 15,000 students by 1968. The new vice-chancellor, Rupert Myers (1969–1981), brought consolidation and an urbane management style to a period of expanding student numbers, demand for change in university style and challenges of student unrest.
The stabilising techniques of the 1980s managed by the vice-chancellor, Michael Birt (1981–1992), provided a firm base for the energetic corporatism and campus enhancements pursued by the subsequent vice-chancellor, John Niland (1992–2002). The 1990s saw the addition of fine arts to the university. The university established colleges in Newcastle (1951) and Wollongong (1961), which eventually became the University of Newcastle and the University of Wollongong in 1965 and 1975 respectively.
In 2012 private sources contributed 45% of the University's annual funding.
The university is home to the Lowy Cancer Research Centre, one of Australia's largest cancer research facilities. The centre, costing $127 million, is Australia's first facility to bring together researchers in childhood and adult cancer.
In 2003, the university was invited by Singapore's Economic Development Board to consider opening a campus there. Following a 2004 decision to proceed, the first phase of a planned $200 m campus opened in 2007. Students and staff were sent home and the campus closed after one semester following substantial financial losses.
The Grant of Arms was made by the College of Arms on 3 March 1952. The grant reads:
The lion and the four stars of the Southern Cross on the St George's Cross have reference to the State of New South Wales which established the university; the open book with scientia ("knowledge") across its pages is a reminder of its purpose. The placement of scientia on the book was inspired by its appearance on the arms of the Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine formed in 1907. Beneath the shield is the motto Manu et Mente ("With hand and mind"), which was the motto of the Sydney Technical College from which the university developed.
An update of the design and colours of the arms was undertaken in 1970, which provided a more contemporary design, yet retained all the arms' heraldic associations. In 1994 the university title was added to the UNSW arms, as was the abbreviation "UNSW", to create the UNSW symbol which is used for everyday and marketing purposes.
The ceremonial mace of the university is made of stainless steel with silver facings and a shaft of eumung timber. On the head are mounted four silver shields, two engraved with the arms of the State of New South Wales and two with the original-design arms of the university. A silver Waratah, NSW's floral emblem, surmounts the head. The mace was donated to the university by Broken Hill Proprietary Company Limited and was presented by the company's chairman, Colin Syme, on 6 December 1962. A former NSW Government Architect, Cobden Parkes, was appointed as the first official mace-bearer.
The main UNSW campus is divided geographically into two areas: upper campus and lower campus. The lower campus area was vested in the university in two lots in December 1952 and June 1954. The upper campus area was vested in the university in November 1959. These two are separated mainly by an elevation rise between the quadrangle and the Scientia building. It takes roughly fifteen minutes to walk from one extreme to the other.
UNSW also has Ucroo's Digital Campus which seamlessly and intelligently connects the university body.
The university has a number of purpose-built research facilities, including:
There are a number of theatre and music venues at the university, many of which are available for hire to the general public. The UNSW Fitness and Aquatic Centre provides health and fitness facilities and services to both students and the general public.
The university is governed by the University Council which is responsible for acting on the university's behalf to promote its objectives and interests. The Council comprises 15 members including the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, President of the Academic Board, two members appointed by the Minister for Education, five members appointed by the Council, three members elected by university staff, and two student elected members.
The principal academic body is the Academic Board, which receives advice on academic matters from the faculties, college (Australian Defence Force Academy), and the boards of studies. It is responsible for academic policy setting, academic strategy via its eight standing committees, approval and delivery of programs, and academic standards. The Board comprises 59 members, including the Vice-Chancellor, members of the executive team, deans and faculty presiding members, members elected from the academic staff, and six from the student body. The Board advises the Vice-Chancellor and council on matters relating to teaching, scholarship and research and takes decisions on delegation from the Council.
The chief executive officer of the university is the President and Vice-Chancellor, currently Professor Ian Jacobs. The deputy vice-chancellors and pro-vice-chancellors form part of an executive team which are responsible for academic operations, research policy, research management, quality assurance and external relations including philanthropy and advancement.
Each of the faculties has their respective boards are responsible for the teaching and examining of subjects within their scope.
The university has nine faculties:
The university also has an association with the National Institute of Dramatic Art.
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In the 2018 QS World University Rankings UNSW was ranked globally as 45th overall (3rd in Australia and 1st in New South Wales), joint 10th in the world for Accounting and Finance (1st in Australia), 16th for law (4th in Australia), and 11th in civil and structural engineering (1st in Australia).
UNSW had more subjects in the ARWU 2017 subject rankings top 50 than any other Australian university, including Water Resources (6th in the world)), Finance (10th in the world), Civil Engineering (11th globally), Law (2nd in Australia) and Mining & Mineral Engineering (12th in the world), and no other university in the world had more subjects included in the league table than UNSW. 
The Australian Good Universities Guide 2014 scored UNSW 5-star ratings across 10 categories, more than any other Australian university. Monash University ranked second with seven five stars, followed by ANU, Melbourne University and the University of Western Australia with six each.
Engineers Australia ranked University of New South Wales as having the highest number of graduates in "Australia's Top 100 Influential Engineers 2013" list at 23%, followed by Monash University at 8%, the University of Western Australia, University of Sydney and the University of Queensland at 7%.
Entry to a particular undergraduate degree program generally requires a certain Australian Tertiary Admission Rank, which varies by course. Some programs also take into account, in addition to a particular ATAR mark, performance in specialised tests, such as the UMAT for medicine and the Law Admission Test for law.
The university offers a bonus points scheme, "HSC Plus", which awards up to a maximum of 5 points for performance in year 12 Australian Senior Secondary Certificate courses relevant to UNSW undergraduate degrees. The scheme does not apply to actuarial studies, law, medicine, or psychology.
UNSW offers several scholarships and support programs to high achieving students. The Co-op program is a scholarship and industry engagement program awarded to students across many programs in the built environment, engineering, science and the Australian School of Business. Students usually enter the program after an application and interview while in their final year of high school. The university also offers Scientia Scholarships to a number of commencing students who performed exceptionally in the Higher School Certificate, which provide funding of $10,000 per year for the duration of the student's program.
The university has a number of residential accommodation options, including Philip Baxter College, Basser College, Goldstein College, Fig Tree Hall, Colombo House, UNSW Hall, New College and New College Village, Warrane College; International House; Shalom College, and Creston College.
A number of students go on exchange to study overseas at partner institutions each semester. Some of these universities are: Princeton University, McGill University, University of Pennsylvania (inc. Wharton), Duke University, Johns Hopkins University, Brown University, Columbia University (summer law students only), University of California Berkeley, University of California Santa Cruz (inc. Baskin), UCLA, University of Michigan (inc. Ross), New York University (inc. Stern), Mississippi State University, Cornell University, University of Connecticut, University of Texas at Austin (inc. McCombs), Maastricht University, University of Padua, University College London (law students only), University of Nottingham, Imperial College London, London School of Economics and ETH Zurich.
Students of the university are involved in a number of projects, including:
In 2007, the three previous student organisations, the UNSW Student Guild, UNSW Union and COFA Students' Association were wound up and reformed as a new student organisation known as the Arc @ UNSW. This new student organisation is a major service provider on campus, running a number of retail outlets, student media such as Tharunka and an entertainment venue, the Roundhouse. The Arc Student Representative Council represents students to the university and nationally and fights for their rights. Arc also provides support and funding to university clubs and societies and runs student volunteer programs such as Orientation Week.
In 2007, the University of New South Wales Sports Association and UNSW Lifestyle Centre merged to become UNSW Sport and Recreation. It runs the UNSW Fitness and Aquatic Centre, provides health and fitness facilities and services and supports the 30 UNSW affiliated sporting clubs that compete both at home and abroad.
UNSW engages with primary and secondary education, administering several national and international academic competitions for school age children. These include:
Notable alumni include:
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