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University of Reading celebrates start of construction of its Malaysia campus – University of Reading

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University of Reading celebrates start of construction of its Malaysia campus

Release Date 27 February 2013

groundbreaking ceremony

View pictures of the groundbreaking ceremony and artistic impressions of University of Reading Malaysia >>>

The University of Reading, one of the top universities worldwide, is celebrating the start of construction at its first overseas campus at EduCity Iskandar Malaysia.

EduCity is a 600-acre education hub comprising of universities and higher education institutes, research and development centres to encourage partnerships between education and industry, student accommodation and sports facilities. The flagship initiative is the first of its kind in Asia.

The University of Reading's Vice-Chancellor, Sir David Bell, says the University is delighted to be part of the EduCity initiative and to meet the growing demand for its brand of quality education.

"We have around 3,000 graduates from the University of Reading in Malaysia and Singapore, the majority of whom travelled to the UK to experience our unique offering, first-class resources and world-class teaching. We are therefore proud and excited to have the opportunity to deliver the same experience to students in the Asia-Pacific region at EduCity in Iskandar. We are consciously and proactively developing this campus to offer the best experience to students, from both the infrastructure of our facilities to the education delivered. To create this level of excellence we have appointed an in-country UK team to work alongside Iskandar Investment Berhad to ensure that quality and experience underpins the development, every step of the way," said Sir David.

The initiative confirms the University of Reading's support for the development of Malaysia as a regional education hub and follows an invitation from the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia to the University of Reading to establish a campus in Malaysia to help it achieve its ambitious target of 70% of the population reaching tertiary education by 2020.

A groundbreaking ceremony took place at EduCity on Wednesday, February 27, 2013, led by the University of Reading's Chancellor Sir John Madejski. Also in attendance were the University's Vice-Chancellor Sir David Bell, Provost and Chief Executive of the University of Reading Malaysia, Professor Tony Downes, Dr Mohamed Ali Abdul Rahman, Director, Governance Division, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Higher Education, and Datuk Syed Mohamed Ibrahim, President and CEO of Iskandar Investment Berhad.

Speaking on behalf of Datin. Ir. Dr. Siti Hamisah Binti Tapsir, Deputy Director General, Ministry of Higher Education, Dr Ali said the Ministry was delighted to be working with the University of Reading to support the development of its first overseas campus:

"As a University recognised as being amongst the top 1% of universities in the world, the University of Reading is an excellent example of the type of high-calibre education provider with whom the Ministry wishes to work.

"We hope to continue to build upon our already excellent and mutually beneficial relationship with the University of Reading," he added.

The new campus, to be known as the University of Reading Malaysia, will open in September 2015 offering programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate level in three thematic subject areas, requested by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia: business and law, science (including pharmacy), and the built environment. It will cater for 2,000 students.

The University has already begun delivering Executive Education programmes to international companies in Malaysia including the Bank of China, Thomson Reuters, HSBC, Standard Chartered, UBS and RBI International through its world-renowned Henley Business School.

Ranked among the top schools in Europe, and operating globally, Henley is one of only 57 business schools in the world to hold triple-accredited status from AMBA, Equis and the AACSB - the top accreditation bodies across the UK, Europe and the USA.

The University of Reading's School of Law is already well established in Malaysia through an undergraduate twinning program run jointly since 2004 with Taylors University, Malaysia, which welcomes some 100 students each year. Law programmes, including Reading's popular commercial law postgraduate degrees, will be offered at the EduCity campus.

English language courses are also being delivered at purpose-built teaching facilities at the Menara Kotaraya campus in Johor Bahru with further programmes being introduced in 2013, including the Foundation in Business. Successful completion of this programme guarantees progression to the University of Reading, including Henley Business School courses.

A Foundation in Science programme offering a pathway to undergraduate science degrees will begin in 2014.

The University of Reading is a world leader in teaching and research regarding management, design and economics of engineered technologies. The university hosts the largest school in the UK for teaching and researching real estate and planning and will be offering programs such as BSc Quantity Surveying, BSc Real Estate, MSc Project Management, and MSc in Real Estate and Planning in Malaysia.

In addition to its innovative research-led teaching and a friendly and supportive environment, the University of Reading is renowned for an excellent graduate employability record.

The new University of Reading Malaysia campus will allow the university, which is consistently ranked among the top 1% of the world's universities, to bring its rich heritage in quality education to Malaysia and the Asia-Pacific region through its first overseas campus.


About the University of Reading

The University of Reading is ranked as one of the UK's 20 most research-intensive universities and is in the top 1% of universities in the world. It enjoys a world-class reputation for teaching, research and enterprise. Established in 1892, it received its Royal Charter in 1926

Achievements include being the first university to win the Queen's Award for Export Achievement (1989) and receiving the Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher Education four times (1998, 2006, 2009 and 2011).

Established as a leading force in British higher education, the University of Reading continues to build on its success. Its ambitious multi-million pound investment programme is delivering twenty-first century facilities, and strengthening its international reputation for quality teaching, research and enterprise.

Sir John Madejski OBE, DL Chancellor of the University of Reading

Sir John Madejski OBE, DL is Chairman and Director of 10 companies worldwide. His most high-profile position is as Chairman of Reading Football Club, and in 2006 he led the club into the English Premier League for the first time in its 140-year history, and again six years later, both times as Champions of the league.

 In 2000 Sir John was awarded an OBE in recognition of his contribution to Reading Football Club and the Reading community. In 2009 he was knighted for charitable services, the highest accolade in the Queen's New Year Honours.

Sir David Bell KCB, Vice-Chancellor

Sir David Bell became Vice-Chancellor at the University of Reading in January 2012 after serving as the most senior education civil servant in the United Kingdom, the Permanent Secretary at the Department of Education. Sir David served four Secretaries of State and three Prime Ministers.

His early career included a career in teaching and local government before being appointed as Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Schools in England (HMCI) by the Privy Council in 2002. Sir David became a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) in the 2011 Birthday Honours.

Professor Tony Downes, Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Professor Tony Downes is Professor of Law, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost and Chief Executive of the University of Reading Malaysia. He has worked at the University since 1990 and has twice served as Acting Vice-Chancellor. As Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Downes has responsibility for planning and operational issues throughout the University. He is expected to remain as Deputy Vice-Chancellor until summer 2014, after which he will move to the position of Provost full-time, based in Malaysia.

For more information see


Gemmaine Walsh, Director of Marketing and Communication

0044 118 378 7109 /

Fiona Leslie, Communications Management

01727 733884/07757 286029 /

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