Universidade da Madeira
The University of Madeira is located in Madeira’s capital city of Funchal, about 700 km off the west coast of Morocco. Along with the Azores, the island of Madeira is one of two autonomous Regions of Portugal.
The university attracts students from all over the island, as well as an increasing population from mainland Portugal and abroad. The diverse student body contributes to the university’s dynamic atmosphere, providing unique cultural perspectives in both research and classroom work.
Some Campus History
The university’s campus dates back to a 16th century Jesuit college. Its first higher education institution, a medical school, was founded in Funchal in the 18th century. In 1978, the University of Lisbon established a satellite campus in Madeira, and from 1983-1986, today’s campus began taking shape, offering courses in the areas of science and technology, arts, humanities, and social sciences. In 1985, the campus integrated a polytechnic school of nursing (Escola Superior de Enfermagem); in 1989, a polytechnic school of education (Escola Superior de Educação da Madeira). In 1996, the Portuguese government and the University of Lisbon formally established the University of Madeira as an independent institution. In 2008, the university celebrates its 20-year anniversary.
University of Madeira Today
Today, undergraduate and graduate students choose from a wide range of programs across several departments, including Art and Design, Biology, Educational Sciences, Medicine, Physical Education and Sports, English and German Studies, Romanic Studies, Physics, Management and Economy, Mathematics and Engineering, Psychology and Humanistic Studies, Chemistry, and a Nursing School. Specific programs include Art and Multimedia, Communication Culture and Organizations, and the Educational Sciences.
The Academic Association of UMa (AAUMA) provides an array of extracurricular activities for university students throughout the year. Past AAUMA sponsored events have included film screenings, Sports Gala, boating trips, and volunteer opportunities. In addition, representatives from each student association serve on the Advisory Council, affording students an active role in the growth of the university and its relationship with the surrounding community.
Students who wish to explore Funchal will find a modern city of about 100,000 inhabitants. Its harbor and climate, combined with an attractive geographical position, have allowed Funchal to have a rapid population growth. The island is noted for its wine production, along with its exotic flowers, tropical fruits, and New Year’s Eve celebrations with a spectacular fireworks show, considered the biggest in the world.
Partnership with Carnegie Mellon
In 2007, Madeira's Mathematics and Engineering Department, along with Carnegie Mellon's Human Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) established a dual-degree Master's in Human-Computer Interaction program. In the program, students study Computer Science, Design, Psychology, and Social and Decision Sciences. Students enrolled in the partnership program study in Madeira and at Carnegie Mellon’s Pittsburgh campus, earning masters degrees from both universities.