UWC Atlantic College

Location: Vale of Glamorgan, Wales
Student profile 350 students aged 16–19
Founded: 1962
Visit their Website: Here


Founded in 1962, UWC Atlantic College was the founding college of the UWC movement. The college is located in the 12th century St Donat’s Castle on the dramatic South Wales coastline, overlooking the Bristol Channel.

Campus and facilities

St Donat’s Castle houses classrooms, a performance hall, dining hall and a library collection of more than 25,000 volumes in a variety of languages. Also on campus are student residency houses, well-equipped science laboratories, computer facilities, music practice rooms, a theatre, a student social centre and an independent arts centre.

Since the 1970’s when UWC Atlantic College was the first school in the world to adopt the International Baccalaureate Diploma, which it helped to develop, as its sole syllabus, it has been actively involved in the development of further IB syllabi. Teaching staff have pioneered new classes such as Environmental Systems, Political Thought, World Religions and Peace and Conflict studies.

Activities and community service

As with all the UWC schools and colleges, service is a key part of the ethos and students at UWC Atlantic College have some unique opportunities to help others and learn about themselves. On account of the college’s coastal location, students can train to become full members of rescue services such as beach Lifeguards and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and be a part of the Marine Environment Monitoring Service. There is an RNLI station on campus with students and staff providing 24 hour sea rescue for the local area. Also located on campus is an outdoor centre where students teach demanding outdoor activities and skills to some 3,000 disadvantaged or disabled visitors each year.

In addition to community service, students also enjoy a wide range of extracurricular activities, lectures and debates that help to develop lively, critical and informed minds. Weekly music concerts, national cultural evenings, visiting speakers, and student debates on international issues enrich the experience and reflect the diverse cultures represented at the college.