With this year’s crop of school-leavers weighing up uni options, we’ve found some great reasons for students, young and older, to choose one of the Gold Coast’s three universities.
Besides the chance to catch a (surf) break between lectures, the active and healthy lifestyle (including 150 free and low cost activities each week – and students love free stuff), the vibrant art and culture scene and the great climate (did we mention almost 300 days of sunshine a year), there are the serious study advantages.
First round, on-time applications to start studying in Semester 1 2016 close with the Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) on 30 September.
Bond University doesn’t enrol through QTAC but takes applications year-round; Southern Cross University (SCU) also enrols through the University Admissions Centre (UAC) for NSW students. Both SCU and Griffith University take direct applications.
Think new and modern
#1 Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus is seriously big, and a lot of the facilities are new – in fact more than 50% of the campus has been built in the last 10 years – the latest is the $38 million Griffith Business School building, opened in 2014. A $150 million state-of-the art health building, home to the new Menzies Health Institute Queensland, opened in 2013.
#2 SCU’s Coolangatta Campus is virtually brand-spanking new – the first building opened in 2010, a second in 2013, while a third will open by 2017.
#3 Southern Cross University Gold Coast is the only campus in Australia (and quite possibly the world) built next to an airport – so you can literally fly-in, fly-out. And the beach is right across the road. Check out the surf and watch the whales on their annual migration.
#4 Bond University has a new, award-winning Abedian School of Architecture building, designed by Sir Peter Cook and Gavin Robotham from CRAB Studios, London. It won the 2014 Gold Coast & Northern Rivers’ Public Building of the Year.
#5 All our unis are modern – Griffith’s Gold Coast campus marks 25 years in 2015 (40 years since the university was established in Brisbane); Bond celebrated its 25th anniversary last year (as Australia’s first private, not-for-profit university) with SCU marking 20 years in 2014.
Rankings that count
#6 Griffith is ranked in the World’s Top 400 universities, putting it in the top 5 percent of universities in the world. It also ranks highly as a young university, ranking 38th in the 2014/15 QS University Rankings Top 50 Under 50.
#7 Bond is consistently ranked Number 1 for Student Experience in Australia’s Good Universities Guide. In fact in 2016 it was awarded more 5-star ratings in the Educational Experience category than any other university in Australia … for the tenth year in a row.
#8 Both Griffith and Bond are in the top 10 Australian universities for their MBA programs in the Boss/Australian Financial Review rankings for 2015. Griffith came in at No 4 and Bond came in at No 7, while Bond’s Executive MBA placed third in the 2013 rankings. Gooduniversities.com.au has rated SCU’s MBA as one of the top three in Australia for ‘good value’. Griffith also has the highest-ranking Australian MBA in the Aspen Institute’s Centre for Business Education’s most recent Beyond Grey Pinstripes Top 100, ranked at number 26.
Making it accessible
#9 First in your family to attend university – no problem. SCU has a strong commitment to providing quality educational opportunities in a regional context. The percentage of first-in-family University attendees is more than 60 percent, much higher than the national average.
#10 SCU has an Indigenous student population of 3.5 percent, much higher than the national average of 1.4 percent, while Bond University awarded 14 Indigenous Scholarships in 2015 and Griffith recently opened it’s First People’s Health Unit, the only Indigenous Health unit at a Queensland University. 243 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are studying health, representing 2.3 percent of all health students.
#11 Age is never a barrier – 22 percent of students at SCU’s Gold Coast campus are aged 30+, while Allan Stewart holds the Guinness World Records title for being the ‘World’s Oldest Graduate’, graduating at the age of 97 from SCU, with a Master of Clinical Science in 2012. It was his fourth university degree.
Top for health
#12 Griffith University Gold Coast is one of the largest health groups of any university in Australia. There are are more than 750 staff and student researchers at Griffith’s Menzies Health Institute Queensland. Griffith is located across from the Gold Coast University Hospital, within the Gold Coast Health & Knowledge Precinct – the largest such health precinct in Australia.
#13 Griffith Health Clinics have 40,000 appointments each year, giving students hands-on experience with real patients during their degree. As at September 2015, SCU health clinics had completed 5128 consultations across Osteopathy, Speech Pathology, Podiatry and GP services in 2015. Physiotherapy has been recently added to the list of services available.
#14 Since Bond’s first cohort of Bachelor of Medicine/Surgery students in 2005 it has graduated 441 doctors. Griffith also offers Medicine, while SCU will add to its Allied Health courses, offering Bio-Medical Science (a pre-cursor to Medicine) from 2016.
Active & Fun
#15 Griffith offers 120 student clubs across campuses, ranging from educational, professional and political, to recreational, cultural, sporting and religious—and if that’s not enough, students can easily start their own club that suits their interests. Bond has a host of clubs to choose from too, and Bond Cheer are the current national university cheerleading champions.
#16 Like running – join the Griffith team – 1017 Griffith alumni, students and staff competed in the 2015 Gold Coast Marathon, representing the largest team at the event. 153 runners took part in the SCU team and the university is an ongoing sponsor of the 10k run.
#17 51 athletes from Griffith represented Australia on the world stage in 23 sports in 2014, including a 14-member team at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with Griffith students and alumni bringing home 10 gold, five silver and seven bronze medals. All three universities have specialised support for elite athletes.
#18 Bond is big on sport too – Queensland Reds Captain James Slipper, who also became the Wallabies 83rd captain for an historic US test match is a student; Executive Director of Sport Gary Nucifora is a brother to former Wallaby David, while his son Harry is a Bond student who plays Under 20’s Rugby for Australia, and Bond is official education partner to the Australian Rugby Union. Alumnus Fiona De Jong holds the position of Secretary General (CEO) of the Australian Olympic Committee.
And there’s more
#19 Independent education network Study International named Bond University as the world’s best beachside university.
#20 Griffith has more than 800 international partnerships, agreements and research collaborations from more than 70 countries. 900 Griffith students took part in an overseas study experience in 2014, while 1020 students from international universities came here on exchange.
#21 Want to live on campus – Griffith University Village was named the 2015 Housing Operator of the Year, largely thanks to a great program to support first year students.