In the community

Part of your community

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Dog and walkers at Colchester Campus

You're always welcome at Essex

We want you to be part of our community and share a little bit of the Essex Spirit. We’re a global university which is proud to play a part in the cultural and economic life of the communities surrounding our Colchester, Southend and Loughton Campuses.

Residents, businesses, schools, charities and other organisations – all are welcome to our campuses. We want you to fully benefit from the educational opportunities, services, events and business support we offer.

We love connecting with people and there are lots of ways you can get involved in our activities and our work. That can mean coming along to one of our venues to see exhibitions, performances, talks and debates or linking-up with our fantastic student volunteers.

Events

We have a packed programme of events at all our campuses including our Professorial Inaugural Lectures. Essex Book Festival has close links with the University with Festival Director Ros Green based in the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies. Meanwhile, Colchester Cafe Scientifique takes our experts out into the community for monthly cafe-style talks. Watch out for sector specific training and conferences in our departments and schools.

Theatre

We have theatres on all our campuses. Check their programme for thought provoking theatre, workshops and school activities.

Art

Discover amazing contemporary art at galleries on our Colchester and Southend Campuses plus ESCALA - our unique collection of Latin American art:

Music

The University of Essex Choir has developed a reputation for high quality and inspirational performances and is widely recognised as one of the foremost large ensembles in the east of England. Interested in joining.

You'll find our Students' Union hosting gigs, our venues host open mic nights and the Lakeside Theatre loves welcoming bands.

Professor Silke Paulmann delivers her Professorial Inaugural Lecture)
Professor Silke Paulmann delivers her Professorial Inaugural Lecture

Our impact

Discover our research

Our research addresses many of the challenges facing society and we’re involved in projects directly relating to issues in Essex and the eastern region.

Thousands of students choose Essex

The core of our mission is excellence in education and excellence in research. We’re an international university, but also the university of choice for many from communities close to our campuses. Discover our courses.

Supporting business to make an impact

We’re developing the Knowledge Gateway research and technology park to drive growth and allow business to access our expertise and graduate talent.

We are a major employer and business in Essex – with a turnover of more than £200 million, a workforce of over 2,000 and overall economic impact of more than £500 million.

Joining our business community will put you at the centre of business innovation and collaboration.

Volunteering

vTeam

Our students love making a difference. Hundreds sign up for the Students’ Union’s vTeam every year and get involved in a staggering number of volunteering projects on our campuses and in the community.

Essex Law Clinic

Students in our School of Law use their skills to help others. At our Essex Law Clinic students, under the supervision of local solicitors, offer free initial legal advice to members of the public, students and staff. Our Essex Street Law project was one of the first of its kind in the UK and increases social awareness of legal issues in local schools.

Make the most of your visit to our Colchester Campus

Enjoy our parkland

Our Colchester Campus is located in historic Wivenhoe Park and is the proud holder of a Green Flag Award,

Wivenhoe Park in the summer)
Wivenhoe Park in the summer

Four-star welcome at Wivenhoe House Hotel

Wivenhoe House, our four-star luxury hotel is surrounded by glorious parkland. It combines the romance and charm of an eighteenth-century Grade II listed house with all the comforts of a contemporary hotel and an award-winning brasserie.

Facilities at our Colchester Campus

You are welcome to use our facilities at our vibrant Colchester Campus including the post office, shops, bank, Waterstones bookshop, printing service and EverythingEssex shop. On Thursday our street market features many tasty treats.

Sport at our Colchester Campus

Our Sports Centre and facilities at our Colchester Campus, include a state-of-the-art gym, fitness classes, tennis and squash courts, outdoor pitches and much more. We're also investing in our facilities and we're building space for 12 new badminton courts, three full size basket ball courts, three netball courts and five volleyball courts. Find out about our general public memberships

Human Performance Unit

Our Human Performance Unit (HPU) offers practical lab sessions for schools, triathlon coaching and sport science testing. Our HPU team works with top athletes to improve their performance.

Holiday camps

Our CHUMS sports camps for eight to fourteen-year-olds welcome children during the Easter, summer and Christmas holidays.

New tennis dome at our Colchester Campus)
New tennis dome at our Colchester Campus

Outreach

Connecting young people with the arts

Youngsters at Unity Primary School in Colchester are being inspired by the arts thanks to a special partnership with our students. The project is designed to develop future leaders within the arts sector while offering more opportunities for children to access the arts and is funded by Royal Opera House Bridge – part of the Arts Council supported national network for connecting children and young people to great art and culture.

Helping schools unlock student potential

We work with thousands of school students and dozens of schools each year through our Outreach team. We've also launched our Schools Membership Plus scheme to create a network of schools and colleges across Essex, Suffolk, East London and Norfolk so they more easily access our events, support and advice. 

Our Outreach team highlights the benefits of university in a fun and engaging way through a huge range of activities for secondary schools, colleges and primary schools.

We also provide events and online resources for teachers to ensure they have all the information they need to help their students make the right choices about their future.

Arts education

We work alongside our academics, Art Exchange, ESCALA and the Lakeside Theatre to offer a variety of opportunities to primary and secondary schools and colleges. Our activities strengthen and deepen schools’ experiences with a wide range of tailored artistic programmes, exposing students to high-quality arts experiences and artistic facilities. We also host family days inspired by the arts.

Get in touch
We welcome your feedback
Telephone: 01206 873333
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