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Warwick launches international Summer University for brightest young people a year early

In August the University of Warwick announced that it was to launch a new international organisation for gifted young people in Spring 2008 with its first "Summer University" to be held in 2009. That announcement has generated such a high level of interest that the University has now decided to accelerate its plans and mount the first International Gateway for Gifted Youth Summer University ("IGGY Summer U") this Summer in July and August 2008.

The first "IGGY Summer U" will now take place on the University of Warwick campus in the last week of July and the first week of August 2008.

Around 100 gifted young people from the UK and overseas will take part in the two-week residential programme. Around 12 of those young people will be specially selected "IGGY Commissioners" who will have been selected to take part in an extended programme to research and consider a significant global issue (Education and Human Rights), and working alongside experts, they will take "evidence" on the issue, and finally report back on their vision on how to tackle that issue. Their report will be launched in the Spring of 2009.

The University has already demonstrated its experience and ability in this area when it hosted the highly regarded "National Academy for Gifted and Talented Youth" which included a Student Academy. Since simply announcing its intention to launch IGGY, Warwick has received over two thousand enquiries from over 30 countries.

Warwick intends to follow up on IGGY’s first Summer U with an IGGY Winter U - possibly in a location outside the UK and an expanded IGGY Summer U programme in 2009. Over the coming year it will start to launch a set of online services to meet the needs of a growing population of the brightest young people around the world, enabling them to communicate with each other and enabling them to collaborate on challenging and creative projects wherever they are located.

Warwick’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Thrift said.

"We are thrilled with the level of interest that IGGY has generated and I am delighted that we have been able to accelerate our plans in order to respond to this demand. We are keen to work with partners to increase the range of opportunities that can be made available through IGGY and to ensure that access to IGGY is possible for students from all social backgrounds."

Warwick’s Deputy Registrar Ken Sloan, who is leading the development of IGGY, said:

"At the heart of the "IGGY" experience going forwards will be a personalized online collaborative learning network. This will be a student-led learning community that will encourage international collaboration in learning and development. Bright and creative young people from across the globe will help shape how leading national and international Higher Education institutions, educators, companies, creative partners and others come together to deliver high quality content, provide expertise, and offer IGGY students challenging learning and creative opportunities. This will enhance their learning and social development, increase their aspirations, and will contribute to and support their educational progress in their own schools and colleges. Importantly IGGY will encourage a generation of the world’s brightest and most creative young people to develop a genuinely international perspective on the things they learn and experience, including the issues that they face.

The launch of the first IGGY Summer U reflects the important role that face to face opportunities will play alongside IGGY Online as part of the range of opportunities that IGGY will offer, particularly in communities where online access is still limited."

Applications for the first IGGY Summer U will open on Tuesday 22nd April 2008. Anyone interested will be able to find more details at this web address from Tuesday 22nd of April

For further information please contact:

Peter Dunn, email:
Press and Media Relations Manager
Communications Office, University House,
University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 8UW, United Kingdom
UK Tel: +44 (0)24 76 523708 Mobile +44 (0)7767 655860

PR31 April 2008