Here’s 10 reasons to love Waterford, the regional capital on the up, on the tourist map, and the place to be for 2,000 savvy first year WIT students this September.
1. A focus on student safety. From the renewal of the Purple Flag again for 2019, the introduction of the Ask Angela campaign, and the ‘Safe Home Scheme’ with local company Rapid Cabs and WITSU demonstrates the focus on safety.
2. It’s a city. Cities come in all shapes and sizes and Waterford has had city status for centuries. One of the bonuses is how compact the city centre is and that much student-friendly accommodation is in walking distance to both the city and the main campus. And Waterford and offers more value for money than many other cities.
3. It’s a capital. Ok, capital of the sunny south east. This means all roads lead to Waterford. Well, there's lots of transport links. One of the highlights of being close to the south coast is more hours of sunshine (source: MetEireann.ie).
4. IT status Waterford is home to the largest institute of technology in the region. Home to 8,000 students, WIT is big on community and small class sizes. There’s nearly 70 CAO courses, and as many postgraduate study options. And if you want to stay on in academia, WIT has been doing research at university level for years.
5. Tourist central. Waterford Viking Triangle, Waterford Greenway, Waterford Crystal, the ancient Reginald’s Tower, five miles of surf and sand at Tramore, the famed fishing village of Dunmore East, beautiful lakes high up in the Comeragh Mountains looking down to the Copper Coast all draw in the tourists, which means more culture, culinary and entertainment options. (See www.visitwaterford.ie).
6. Festival fever. It seems like there’s a festival every weekend. Spraoi, Daytripper, Summer in the City, Modwords, All Together Now, Waterford Walls, Waterford Harvest Festival, Imagine Festival, Waterford Book Festival, Winterval are just a selection of the most high profile ones. And there are plenty of student entertainment options from the cultural to nightlife.
7. Outdoors on the doorstep. Stretch those legs with a cycle on the Waterford Greenway, a hike in the Comeragh mountains, a saunter on a beach, a swim in the sea, all 15-30 minutes from the city.
8. High performance. The €20m state-of-the-art facilities that the WIT Arena offers isn’t just a draw to wellbeing and sport-focused students. It’s popular with all sorts of high profile teams as a training ground, and the host to the Renault GAA World Games 2019. And it’s a place of learning for our Department of Sport and Exercise Science students.
9. Work placement. There’s room for more multinationals, SMEs and startups to open premised across the county, and growing areas include tech and pharma. This bodes well for future graduates looking for work placement, graduate programmes, or once they have graduated, a good work life balance. Read about student and graduate experiences at www.fibraopticaparamodelismo.com/studentstories.
10. Ambition built on success. 2020 will be a year of celebrations marking 50 years of WIT. Operating at university level for many years, and on the path to technological university status, WIT has outlined in its strategic plan for 2018-2021 its goal to be amongst the Top 100 universities under 50 years old by 2030.