Edinburgh Napier links-up with University of the Third Age

Partnership agreement to enhance the joy of life-long learning

Date posted

17 July 2017


Last updated

14 June 2022

Retired and semi-retired individuals in Edinburgh with a passion for learning are set to benefit from a new agreement that will see them able to participate inGroup of people posing in front of the camera in the main staircase of Sighthill campus University research projects.

Edinburgh Napier University has signed a partnership agreement with University of the Third Age (U3A) as a commitment to supporting the life-long learning passions of its members in the city.

The U3A in Edinburgh has more than 1900 members who meet regularly for various interest groups, activities and social opportunities as a means to learn from one another. The emphasis is not on qualifications, but for the sheer joy of discovery.

Through the partnership, University of the Third Age members will have the opportunity to actively participate in Edinburgh Napier academic research projects as well as engage with students through a pilot knowledge exchange mentoring initiative.

The University’s Special Collections will also serve to engage specific interest groups within University of the Third Age and support its members to indulge their passions for history, literature and culture.

The professional experience members have gained throughout their respective careers will also serve to support the aspirations of Edinburgh Napier University students.

Bruce Cowan, Chair of the Edinburgh Branch of the University of the Third Age said: “The members of Edinburgh University of the Third Age are looking forward to a long and mutually productive association with the staff and students of Edinburgh Napier University.”

Interest groups are very much at the core of the University of the Third Age framework and the Scottish Authors Interest Group recently visited the Robert Louis Stevenson Collection at Edinburgh Napier’s historic Merchiston Campus.

Sheila Smith, Leader of the Scottish Authors Interest Group, said: “We were totally bowled over at being allowed to handle some of the collection’s books, look at others, view photographs as well as share in the expertise of Edinburgh Napier’s academic knowledge and enthusiasm. I think we could have stayed all day.”

A collaborative exhibition project is planned as part of the Luminate Festival which seeks to explore and challenge popular perceptions of creativity in later life through a cross-generational artistic exchange of mediums, techniques, colour and tone.

Karen Goodman, Head of Development and External Relations said: “Here at Edinburgh Napier University we see great benefit in inviting others - passionate about learning and open to collaboration and sharing of ideas and experiences – who can bring insight to our students’ education journey, into the University family. Our partnership with U3A will certainly enhance that journey, but we hope that it will also give something back to members.”

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