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What is UWC?

UWC (United World Colleges) is a global education movement that makes education a force to unite people, nations and cultures
for peace and a sustainable future.     

Central to the ethos of UWC is the belief that education can bring together young people from all backgrounds on the basis of their shared humanity, to engage with the possibility of social change through courageous action, personal example and selfless leadership. To achieve this, UWC schools and colleges all over the world deliver a challenging and transformational educational experience to a deliberately diverse group of young people, inspiring them to become agents of positive change in line with UWC’s core values:

  • International and intercultural understanding
  • Celebration of difference
  • Personal responsibility and integrity
  • Mutual responsibility and respect
  • Compassion and service
  • Respect for the environment
  • A sense of idealism
  • Personal challenge
  • Action and personal example

Today, UWC has 17 schools and colleges on 4 continents, the majority of which focus exclusively on the 16-19 year old age group: a time when young people’s energy and idealism can be guided towards empathy, responsibility and lifelong action. These colleges teach the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma as their formal curriculum, a qualification that UWC played a major part in developing, while also emphasising the importance of experiential learning, community service and outdoor activities.

UWC college students are selected domestically, in more than 155 countries, through UWC’s unique national committee system. Selection is based on demonstrated promise and potential. In accordance with the UWC ethos that education should be independent of the student’s socioeconomic means, 70% of students in their IB Diploma years receive either full or partial financial assistance, based on their needs.

UWC also runs shorter educational programmes - conducted at the campuses of its 17 schools and colleges and beyond - increasing the number of people who can have access to a UWC educational experience.

UWC fosters a lifelong commitment to social responsibility and, to date, it has inspired a worldwide network of more than 60,000 alumni, who believe it is possible to take action and make a difference locally, nationally and internationally.