Cardiff’s a young and vibrant city, and no wonder, since one in five residents are students (this makes a grand total of 45,000, in case you were wondering). This guarantees one thing: Cardiff is a great night out. The student population set up various club nights, gigs and creative ventures in their spare time. It’s also a great place to stay after graduating, offering good employment opportunities, relatively low cost of living, and a great quality of life.


There are three universities in the Welsh capital: Cardiff University, Cardiff Metropolitan University and the University of South Wales, which has a campus in the city for its Faculty of Creative Industries, covering everything from design and photography to radio and music production, at the newly extended ATRiuM building. Meanwhile, the further education college Cardiff and Vale College (CAVC), with 20,000 students, has recently moved into a £45 million campus on the edge of the city centre.


Most students choose to live in the inner-city districts of Cathays or Roath, the former having become the most popular in recent years, situated closest to the university campus which takes up much of Cardiff’s architecturally impressive civic centre. The students have fostered a positive community living side by side with locals in these areas. Meanwhile, 8,300 purpose-built student bed spaces have been created in the city centre and nearby Maindy to meet growing demand.


Cardiff University belongs to the Russell Group, and is one of the most popular universities in the UK based on UCAS applications (with seven times more than it has places to offer), attracting 12,000 students to Wales from other parts of the UK as well as 6,605 students from outside the UK to study in Wales. It also provides some 13,000 jobs and contributes £1bn to the UK economy. The university is ranked fifth in the UK for Research Excellence and is consistently ranked as the best university in Wales.

Cardiff benefits socially and economically from its high quality educational institutions, while its students benefit enormously from their time in the Welsh capital. With a growing creative economy, students have increasing opportunities to gain experience and jobs in this sector.

Image from Flickr Dom Atreides