As UCL starts the countdown to its bicentenary in 2026, a research and engagement project puts students and alumni at the heart of the history of UCL.
‘Generation UCL’ explores 200 years of student life in London, turning institutional history upside down to suggest that the first students of 1828 should be seen as the real ‘founders’ of UCL. Generation UCL is establishing the first major collection of oral history interviews with UCL alumni and has supported the deposit of students’ union archive material with UCL Special Collections.
The project is a partnership between Education, Practice and Society at IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society, Students’ Union UCL, and the Office of the Vice-President (Advancement). The project works closely with the UCL200 Bicentennial team and UCL Special Collections.
Generation UCL is led by Professor Georgina Brewis (IOE) and John Dubber (Students’ Union UCL). Dr Sam Blaxland, Lecturer in Education (IOE), leads on the oral history element of the project. We also work with a number of student researchers and interns.
Planned project outputs include an open access book with UCL Press, an Octagon exhibition and a programme of impact and engagement activities to involve the whole UCL community. In 2023, we were awarded a Student Success grant to revise and update UCL’s walking tour, working with Race Equality Steering Group Co-Chair Mike Sulu, external consultant Subhadra Das and project coordinator Julia Chaffers.
Negley Harte, John North and Georgina Brewis, The World of UCL (UCL Press, 2018).
Sam Blaxland, Students' Union UCL: A Short History (UCL, 2023).