University of St Andrews
The University of St Andrews was founded between 1410-1413 and is the oldest university in Scotland and the third oldest in the United Kingdom. The University is situated in the town of St Andrews, on the eastern coast of Scotland.
The University was founded in 1410 when a charter of incorporation was bestowed upon the Priory of St Andrews Cathedral. The University grew in size quite rapidly; St Salvator's College was established in 1450, St Leonard's in 1511 and St Mary's in 1537. Some of the college buildings in use today date from this period as does St Salvator's Chapel. At this time much of the teaching was of a religious nature and was conducted by clerics associated with the Cathedral.
During the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries the University underwent many changes. The distinctive red gowns which are still in use today were adopted in 1672 and towards the end of the seventeenth century a move to Perth was considered and eventually rejected. In 1747 St. Salvator's and St. Leonard's Colleges were merged to form United College. During the nineteeth century student numbers were very low and the University having to close was a very real possibility. In the 1870s there were fewer than 150 students, perhaps partly in response to this the University was, in 1897, strengthened by the affiliation of University College in Dundee which became a centre of medical and scientific excellence. This affiliation ended in 1967 when Dundee University became an independent institution. Today the university is growing rapidly and in sound financial health, perhaps helped by what some students have argued are the highest hall of residence rents in the UK outside of London.
The University has a strong link with America, with significant numbers of students from that country. Benjamin Franklin, golfer Bobby Jones and (most recently) Bob Dylan have all been awarded honorary degrees. Also, three of the signatories of the 1776 American Declaration of Independence received degrees from St Andrews. It is also claimed that the dollar sign was invented at the University, and it is certain that the decimal point was.
There are several student newspapers in publication; The Saint, a fortnightly tabloid, is the oldest and has the highest circulation but there is also The Mitre, the self-styled quality paper, and The Chihuahua, which has been described as being "Private Eye without the journalism".
The Mitre has been in publication since March 26, 2003 and is pitched as a right-wing, Christian organ. Unlike The Saint it is not funded in any way by the Students' Association and is indeed highly critical of the Union. It unashamedly boasts of the fact that the majority of its readership is comprised of student Catholics, Tories and debaters, and has strong links with their respective societies. Its distribution is quite limited compared to The Saint, although it has become easier to get hold of recently.
The Saint (called 'the Chronicle' before 1997) is ostensibly editorially independent of the University of St Andrews Students' Association, although it is financially dependent on a deal with the organisation where office-space is made available in exchange for free advertising. Receipt of this requires that it comply with some of the rules laid down by the Association for supported groups such as regulations on equal opportunities. It has regularly won awards for being the best student newspaper in Scotland. It is sold in the streets and in several shops.
Finally, The Chihuahua is given out free to anyone who wants it, and unlike the other two papers it makes no attempt at serious journalism, instead focusing on satire and parody. To this end it has described The Mitre as a "fascist hate-rag" (although some consider the Mitre to be self-parodying) and its articles often sport headlines such as "'Canadian' Student outed as American".
- University of St Andrews website (http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/)
- University of St Andrews Students' Association Website (http://www.yourunion.net/)
- Website selling University of St Andrews Merchandise, run by the Students' Association (http://www.yourunionshop.net/)
- The Mitre - Monthly student newspaper (http://www.andrewcusack.com/mitre/)
- - Message board for students of the University (http://www.thesinner.net/)
- The University of St. Andrew's Liberty Club (http://www.libertyclub.org.uk/)
- The Saint newspaper (http://www.saintonline.co.uk/)
- St. Andrews University Student Nationalist Association (http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~snpsoc)