The National Technical University of Athens (Greek: Εθνικό Μετσόβιο Πολυτεχνείο, National Metsovian Polytechnic), sometimes simply known as Athens Polytechnic, is among the oldest and most prestigious higher education institutions of Greece.
It was founded in 1836 as a part-time vocational school named Royal School of Arts
which, as its role in the technical development of the fledgling state grew, developed into Greece's sole institution providing engineering degrees up until the 1950s, when polytechnics were established outside of Athens. Its traditional campus
is located in the center of the city of Athens
on Patision Avenue
, while a suburban campus, the Zografou
Campus, was built in the 1980s.
It was named Metsovion in honor of its benefactors Nikolaos Stournaris, Eleni Tositsa, Michail Tositsas and Georgios Averoff, whose origin is from the town of Metsovo in Epirus.
The National Technical University of Athens is divided into nine academic faculties (Greek: σχολές), which are furthermore divided into 33 departments (Greek: τομείς):
The university comprises about 700 of academic staff and a total of 10,000 students, 15% of them are post-graduates.
Undergraduate studies have a duration of 5 years.
Contribution in Greek political life
The National Technical University of Athens has always been a place of vibrant political life, being closely associated to the Greek student movement and the struggles for peace
. The most obvious example of this was the Athens Polytechnic uprising
on November 17
, which was the first step to overthrow Greece's military dictatorship
In the 14, 15 and 16 of November 1973, the students were barricated inside the institute, and started broadcasting a pirate radio transmission, calling the people of Athens to rebel. In the evening of November 17th however, a. AMX-30 class tank of the military, broke the main gate and charged inside, after receiving orders from the dictatoric government. About 28 students were killed in the incident and the uprising ended. The junta however, was irreparably damaged from the popular outcry. The junta fell in 1974, after the Turkish invasion in Cyprus and since then, November 17th is celebrated as a day of freedom and Democracy. All schools and universities of the country remain closed that day.
The terrorist organisation 'November 17th' named itself after this incident.