Students, we know it’s a tough call to make – where to spend the next three to four years? We’re here to help. Yes, we’ll tell you a bit about the universities and the courses, but what we really want to share with you is the lifestyle you can experience here in Kent.
We’ve got not one, not two but four universities here in Kent, so whether you’re hoping to study sport science, architecture, history or medicine, Kent is the spot to find your place.
Boasting the award-winning University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church Universities, and innovative and state-of-the-art Universities at Medway campus, which is home to The University of Kent, Canterbury Christ Church and The University of Greenwich, there are so many opportunities to study in Kent, which must be why 40,000 students have made their home in Canterbury alone. What's more, Kent will be home to the Kent Medical Campus, set to be a leading centre for education, health and science in the South East.
The University of Kent offers a whole host of fascinating courses at its Medway and Canterbury campuses, from Architecture and History, to Sport Science and Wildlife Conservation, carrying out internationally-recognised research.
With expanding facilities and a vibrant International community, whether you're into studying Sport, joining the Medieval society or Ecology, Canterbury Christ Church has lots to tempt you. The University of Greenwich’s Kent base enjoys state-of-the-art teaching spaces and business-relevant courses, accredited by industry bodies. As one of the UK’s top creative universities, University for the Creative Arts’ Rochester and Canterbury campuses are all about collaboration and pushing boundaries, offering everything from fashion and photography, to architecture and computer design.
Our universities are recognised for their teaching excellence, their conscious attention to sustainability and their wealth of courses, but as you’ve probably guessed, we’re all about balance here in Kent, so let us share the possibilities of Kent beyond the campus. Of course, you’ve got those beaches (award-winning beaches at that), but you’ve also got the vibrant city of Canterbury, a Purple Flag award-winner for its exceptional night life and the exciting and vibrant towns of Rochester and Chatham in Medway. While our high speed trains to London, and links to The Port of Dover and Eurotunnel, will have you home to visit the folks quicker than you can say "laundry day", with the likes of creative Folkestone, designer shopping and a World Heritage Site on your doorstep, don’t be surprised if you want to stick around during reading week.
Between Rochester and Chatham you’ll find the unique Universities at Medway campus, a partnership between the University of Greenwich, University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church University. Together these three universities offer their own range of courses and expertise while partnering to offer their students a wide range of first-class facilities. Here history and technology combine to give students the best of both worlds.
Beyond campus 50 free festivals roll on throughout the year in Medway, from every literary student’s favourite, the Dickens Festival, to the Medway Gaming and food and drink festivals. Did we mention Medway was the home of Dickens? Literature buffs will love following in the author’s footsteps at Eastgate House and The Guildhall Museum. While those studying history should add a trip to the Historic Dockyard Chatham to their weekend-research list, for its 400 years of maritime history, or head to the Royal Engineers Museum to discover how these heroes have been supporting the British Army for more than 300 years.
Creatives, Medway is home to the Rochester campus of the University for the Creative Arts, where course in photography, fashion, TV and textiles are all on offer. Once you’ve finished your course, the prospects continue with the area’s role in the innovative Creative Estuary project, a 60 mile stretch of the Thames Estuary that’s being transformed into one of the most exciting cultural hubs in the world.
Athletes, we’ve no doubt you’ll be looking to stretch your legs once you arrive and this area isn’t short of outdoor space, with blue flag beaches and a National Nature Reserve to explore on the nearby Isle of Sheppey, and enough green space in Medway alone to make up 13 Hyde Parks! If you’re looking for a fast-paced fix, Cyclopark in nearby Gravesend has it covered. Kitted out with 6 kilometres of mountain bike trails for varying abilities, a skate park, road course and first-class BMX tracks. Football lovers, you’ll find a new allegiance to local Gillingham Football Club with a season ticket for nearby Priestfield Stadium as you follow the Gills through the ups and downs of the season.
Once the end of term rolls around, nearby Ebbsfleet’s high speed train links to London and beyond will have you back home in time for that Sunday roast, not to mention your parent’s laundry facilities!
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, 40,000 students have made Canterbury in East Kent their home, so let’s find out why!
Firstly, Canterbury is home to Canterbury Christ Church, set amidst gorgeous historical sites such as Canterbury Cathedral and St Augustine's Abbey and secondly, it’s home to The University of Kent, just a short walk from the cobbled streets of Canterbury’s city centre. What’s more the area also boasts the Canterbury campus of The University for the Creative Arts, not to mention several language schools across the city and in the nearby Isle of Thanet. So that’s why they’re choosing to study here, but let’s get to why they’re choosing to live here.
We’ll start in Canterbury because there’s a lot here! Literary students, this is the home of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. History hopefuls, we have Roman ruins here and architecture students, this is where’s you’ll find Canterbury Cathedral, the very spot where Thomas Becket was murdered, part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Aside from that here you’ll find restaurants and bars to spend your student loan in, all part of the Purple Flag Awarded nightlife, alongside big brands and boutique shopping.
When the sun shines, we recommend heading to the beach! Hop on the train to The Isle of Thanet where you’ll find yet more blue flag beaches, surfing, paddleboarding and plenty more. Not only that, but there’s culture and heritage galore here too, with Charles Dickens and JMW Turner all calling this very spot home.
And speaking of Turner, creatives you had better visit the Turner Contemporary gallery, a state-of-the-art gallery that’s hosted the Turner Prize 2019 and hosts an ever-changing exhibitions calendar. While nearby Folkestone is just a short train ride away, offering the Folkestone Creative Quarter and an entire trail of sculptures and artwork spread throughout the town and along that glorious coastline. Photography students, you’ll no doubt have heard of the ethereal and strangely beautiful Dungeness with its wide skies and views for miles, so be sure to head there when you make the move to Kent.
Margate’s Dreamland is the place to go when the sun shines. Spend the day sipping and dining at Cinque Ports, take a spin around the Roller Room, and experience plenty of thrills aboard vintage amusement rides – cameras at the ready. When the sun goes down, the park comes alive with a packed programme of live music and festivals, so keep your eyes trained on their website for the best big name acts and undiscovered talents – remember you saw them here first.
Speaking of live music, Leas Cliff Hall in Folkestone is one of the best venue’s around. Perched on the top of Folkestone’s chalky cliffs, it’s played host to the likes of Kings of Leon, Stereophonics and Status Quo over the years, not to mention a whole host of comedians. For food and drink, we cannot recommend Folkestone Harbour Arm enough. Seriously, when your friends come to visit take them there for street food and the best sea views around. When your parents come to visit take them to Rocksalt for sensational freshly caught seafood right on the edge of the Harbour.
And speaking of your parents, you’ll have to take them to nearby Dover while you’re here, home to those iconic White Cliffs, plenty of history in the form of the magnificent Dover Castle with its secret wartime tunnels where Operation Dynamo was meticulously planned. Not far along the coast The Battle of Britain Memorial tells the tale of The Few and their heroic actions in a way that’s brings it to life far more than a textbook ever could.
So there we have East Kent, but don’t you worry, we’ve got plenty more to share!
Welcome to West Kent, a green gem that’s just on the doorstep of your new home. Rolling landscapes make up this corner of the county, with the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and The High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty rolling through the landscape – ecology and wildlife conservation students, this one’s for you. These gorgeous landscapes are home to some incredible wildlife, while nearby Bedgebury Pinetum has the UK’s largest collection of conifers and offers some pretty incredible routes to take to two wheels.
If you’re feeling a little more boujee (that student loan only comes in three times a year, so make it count), the area’s vineyards offer a taste of luxury, while the Ashford Designer Outlet (just a short hop on the high speed train from Canterbury) offers premium brands for up to 60% less. Venture a little further on the train and you could soon be in Tunbridge Wells, another shopping favourite with independent restaurants and boutique shops galore – one to note for when you’re in search of the perfect Freshers Ball outfit.
For history heads and political scientists, you’d better believe this is the place to come with manor houses and castles galore. From the home of Anne Boleyn, to Leeds Castle, where statesmen through history were lavishly entertained by the ever-welcoming Lady Baillie, Kent has certainly seen some historic goings on. Chartwell in Westerham near Sevenoaks should be top of your list, Churchill’s home the very place that led him to declare “a day away from Chartwell is a day wasted”, if that’s not a seal of approval, we don’t know what is.
So there you have it, Kent in a nutshell. If you haven’t guessed by now, we’re big fans of balance here. While we’re fiercely proud of our universities, and rightly so, we know that studying isn’t the only reason you’re venturing out and moving away from home. With its vibrant towns and cities, rolling countryside, transport links, and our glorious coastline, not to mention those award-winning universities, Kent is the perfect place to find your place.