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THE COLLEGE - An Overview
Selwyn College takes its name from George Augustus Selwyn , who was the first Bishop of New Zealand (1841-68) and later Bishop of Lichfield (1868-78), and in whose memory the College was founded. The College crest incorporates the Selwyn family arms and those of the Diocese of Lichfield.
The distinctive red-brick Victorian Old Court is Tudor Gothic in style, much of it designed by architect Sir Arthur Blomfield. The Court comprises seven staircases (on which members of the College live and teach), as well as the Tower and Gateway, Master's Lodge, Chapel and Dining Hall and lovely Gardens . Building began on the gateway and on A and B staircases in 1880 on six acres of farm-land purchased from Corpus Christi College, and at the time many considered the site too far removed from the centre of Cambridge. However, due to the steady growth of the University, Selwyn now stands at its geographical heart . The College itself expanded in the late 1960s with the building of Cripps Court; it was also one of the first colleges to become mixed, admitting women in 1976.
The College opened in time for the beginning of the academic year in 1882, when 28 undergraduates were admitted. The teaching staff comprised the Master, the Tutor and one non-resident lecturer. Today the College is the home to around 360 undergraduate and 130 postgraduate students, drawn from universities all over the world, the Master and more than 60 Fellows. Former students from Selwyn College have become prominent in many walks of life, including the actor Hugh Laurie, barrister and television presenter Clive Anderson, the Rt Hon John Gummer MP, and writer Robert Harris (author of ' Enigma ' and ' Fatherland ').
The College has a committed and friendly body of non-academic staff numbering around 110.
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