‘International,’ and how meaning turns on a single word

I found this programme serendipitously, then learned of its inspiring academic tradition. Through 152 years the University of London External Programme, now the University of London  International Programmes, has provided education and opportunity for students around the globe. Nobel Laureates and heads of state are among its alumni. Colleges within the University of London are global household names with reputations for excellence. They confer the prestige of association as well as degrees upon their graduates.

I have sometimes thought of the others who during this 152 year history have pursued their interests just as I am doing now. Over those years I imagine thousands of exam papers from far-flung locations bound by clipper ship for London; the many lives enriched or even changed by post.

A highly romantic view and perhaps a naïve one but it suits me. If ‘External’ summarizes the view of the world from the window London offered during the last century and a half, then ‘International’ is a paradigm shift that looks inwards.

For me, by changing this one word the University of London International Programmes becomes more relevant as an institution and to its students. For me, it means instead of resting on its considerable laurels, the University of London International Programmes embraces its experience of 152 years, its dynamic student body and the nature of the great art taught through Goldsmith College Department of English and Comparative Literature. It adopts a name which reflects the international character of the student body, its international academic stature and the international nature of English studies in our modern world.

2 thoughts on “‘International,’ and how meaning turns on a single word

  1. I am student of Politics and International Relations my Lead College is LSE, The University of London International Programs offers a world class education and unique learning opportunity.

    I am currently at HARVARD Kennedy School of Government on an Executive Leadership program and I feel that being a student with the University of London played a significant role in getting onto this program.

    As a working student with an International career focus the name is very relevant and highlights the truly “International” Character of the University of London.


  2. Hi Aaron,

    I would like to get in touch with you to enquire more about Bsc Politics and International relations and it’s acceptance in US. Would be really grateful if you could drop me an email (sharoffs@gmail.com).



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