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Ustinov College

Welcome to new students

A Warm Welcome from our College Principal

Welcome to Ustinov College, Durham University’s sole postgraduate only College, comprising a community of scholars representing over 100 nationalities. Renamed in 2003 in honour of the actor and writer Sir Peter Ustinov, who was Chancellor of Durham University, Ustinov College was formerly known as the Graduate Society.

Our focus at Ustinov is to provide a safe, supportive, motivating and enjoyable collegiate environment that nurtures global citizenship and enables its members to grow intellectually and socially. Globally the College is recognised as a friendly and welcoming place that openly celebrates the strength arising from diversity, inter-disciplinarity and collegiality and applauds leadership, creativity, innovation, teamwork and excellence. At Ustinov I trust you will have a truly unique experience as an “Ustinovian” that will lay the basis for a life-long mutually rewarding relationship with the College, University and the people and communities of the “Northeast”.

On behalf of all staff at Ustinov I would like to extend to you a warm and hearty welcome. We look forward to meeting you at one of the many events organised as part of the College’s social and academic calendar.

Professor Glenn McGregor



If you have any queries about arriving in Durham or the information on these pages, please contact us:

College Reception:
College Admissions:
College Accommodation:

Welcome from the GCR President 

Dear Ustinovians,

I have the great privilege of welcoming you all to Ustinov College. If my experience is anything to go by, this is the beginning of an amazing experience - you’ll meet new friends, learn new skills, and develop a love-hate relationship with the British weather. The reason that I get to welcome you is that I am the president of the Ustinov Graduate Common Room (GCR).

Apart from studying and expanding your horizons, our job is to make sure you have fun. The goal of the GCR is to make your existence as comfortable, supportive, and enjoyable as possible. We aim to build a real sense of community at Ustinov by organizing activities while providing an appropriate environment in which to interact and socialise with others. Every year we arrange parties, cultural events, trips out of Durham, barbecues, musical evenings, dance events, and lots more.

We also help run and maintain a lot of the facilities, including pool tables and the gym. If you live in college accommodation, then your GCR membership is already included. If you live in private accommodation, you’ll need to pay the GCR separately: just £40 for the year.

But how does the GCR exactly work? Well, we are a committee of Ustinov students, elected by you, fellow Ustinov students. This means you, too, can be on the GCR committee. If you’ve got an idea to improve the GCR, or fancy helping contribute to the wonderful Ustinov community, then run for a position. There will be elections soon after you arrive (in October), so keep your eyes peeled for the nominations. Remember, Ustinov’s motto is ‘strength in diversity’, and we take this seriously! Therefore we encourage everyone to get involved. Don’t feel intimidated if you’ve never done such a thing before—learn by doing!

I will try not to ramble on, as I know you are probably eager to read on and find out what kind of things you can expect to look forward to at both Ustinov and in Durham. In the meantime, enjoy the rest of this booklet, and do get in touch if you have any questions. As well as emailing one of us on the GCR committee, you can also post questions on this year’s Ustinov Facebook Group—just search for ‘Ustinov College 2017–2018’ on Facebook.

Before I finish, I just want to give a small bit of advice: get involved, and come to Fisher House and Sheraton House, especially during Induction Week. It’s nerve-wracking and exciting, but you’ll be so glad you did; there is so much on offer here and there are so many new friends to make!

Can’t wait to meet you all!

Jamie Graham

Connect with the Graduate Common Room


Twitter/Instagram: @UstinovGCR

Whatsapp: +44 7871 257749

Send the message “Update me!” to the number above to get instant notifications about GCR news, events, and updates!

Facebook group: Ustinov College 2017-18

Facebook page: Ustinov College GCR

Peter Platypus – Ustinov College Mascot

Follow us on Twitter @UstinovCollege

Like us on Facebook for the latest news, images and stories

Experience Ustinov College: visit our YouTube channel

The Ustinovian online magazine, created by postgraduates of Ustinov College for Ustinovians everywhere.

Catch up with life at Ustinov and beyond with the latest issue of The Ustinovian! (Click here for the pdf)

Click on the brochure above to explore our Global Citizenship Programme & Scholarships, or click here for the pdf version.