27 Jul 2012

1 in 50 UK graduate millionaires studied with The Open University

The Open University has been ranked 10th in a list of UK universities with graduate millionaires. Oxford took the top spot, followed by the University of London and Cambridge in third place.

According to the Skandia Millionaire Monitor (published Spring 2012), 1.9 per cent of all UK-based millionaires have Open University degrees. The survey reported on the lifestyle and attitudes of millionaires in six countries: the UK, France, Italy, Hong Kong, Sinagpore and Dubai.

In the UK, three quarters earned their wealth through employment, with 15% achieving it through their own business. The Open University and the University of Bristol (9th place) had the highest number of millionaire graduates from state schools (around 90%).

Lucian Hudson, Director of Communications at The Open University, said: “This is a fresh twist in our drive to provide educational opportunity and social justice! It shows how education truly helps people achieve their career aspirations, whether they are employed or using their skills to run their own businesses.

“Many people, who did not think university was an option for them, have changed their lives through higher education. 18 000 students access education through our targeted access, taster, and Openings programmes, and we further inspire people through our free online learning materials on OpenLearn and our partnership with the BBC.”

The Open University is a world leader in distance learning and a pioneer of teaching and learning methods which enable people to achieve their goals through flexible study that fits around work, family and social commitments.

Editor’s Notes
1. There were 1,503 respondents in total, including 436 from the UK.
The survey was carried out by CoreData Research UK, on behalf of Skandia. The report is available online (see link right).

2. The rankings were compiled from the percentage of all UK-based millionaires who attended a given institution, according to results of a random survey.

3. The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning. Since it began in 1969, the OU has taught more than 1.7 million students and has more than 264,000 current students, including 18,000 overseas.

The OU has been one of the top three UK universities for student satisfaction in the National Student Survey every year since the survey began in 2005. In 2010/11 it had a 93 per cent satisfaction rating. Over 70% of students are in full-time or part-time employment, and four out of five FTSE 100 companies have sponsored staff to take OU courses.

In the UK’s latest Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2008) the Open University was ranked in the top third of UK higher education institutions. More than 50% of OU research was assessed in the RAE as internationally excellent, with 14% as world leading.

Regarded as Britain’s major e-learning institution, the OU is a world leader in developing technology to increase access to education on a global scale. Its vast ‘open content portfolio’ includes free study units on OpenLearn, which has had more than 21 million visits, and materials on iTunes U, which has recorded over 50 million downloads. The OU has a 41 year partnership with the BBC which has moved from late-night lectures in the 1970s to prime-time programmes such as Frozen Planet, Bang Goes the Theory, James May’s Big Ideas and The Money Programme.

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