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25 April 2007 PR 07/52

Johnny Ball to open new Loughborough University facility

Popular TV personality Johnny Ball will be visiting Loughborough University next week to open its new Mathematics and Statistics Support Centre.

sigma – Centre for Excellence in Mathematics and Statistics Support – is a joint initiative between Loughborough and Coventry Universities. It will provide support to thousands of undergraduate and postgraduate students who require some knowledge of mathematical and/or statistical methods for their studies.

Dr Sarah Carpenter, Assistant Director of sigma, said: “We are delighted that Johnny Ball has agreed to come and officially open this fantastic new facility, which will make a big difference to thousands of students.”

Taking place on Wednesday 2 May, the opening of sigma will be followed by a public lecture by Johnny Ball. Entitled ‘Past Imperfect, Future Fantastic’, the lecture will take a humorous look at historic human failings and ask whether the next generation will do any better.

For further information about sigma visit: http://www.sigma-cetl.ac.uk

ENDS

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Notes for editors:

  1. Members of the media wishing to attend the opening of sigma or the public lecture are asked to contact Judy Smyth in advance for further information.
  2. In January 2005 the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) designated Loughborough University (through its Mathematics Education Centre) and Coventry University (through its Mathematics Support Centre) as a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL).
  3. Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for excellence in teaching and research, strong links with industry and unrivalled sporting achievement.

    It is a member of the esteemed 1994 Group – a set of internationally recognised, research-intensive universities – and has a reputation for the relevance of its work. Its degree programmes are highly regarded by professional institutions and businesses, and its graduates are consistently targeted by the UK’s top recruiters.

    Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

    In the 2006 National Student Survey, the University gained a top five place, with nine out of Loughborough’s 23 departments topping their subject tables. Loughborough was also placed 6th in the 2007 Times Good University Guide and was named winner of the 2006 THES award for the UK’s Best Student Experience. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded five Queen's Anniversary Prizes – an
    achievement bettered by no other university.

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