University of Greenwich: University of Greenwich commits to do more for students who experience forced migration and estranged students

By being a Supporting Organisation, the University of Greenwich takes its first step to becoming a University of Sanctuary and pledges to aid in the progress towards a UK that is a welcoming place of safety for all and proud to offer sanctuary to people fleeing violence and persecution.

Work has already begun in this area and the university has confirmed that it has increased its support to provide two sanctuary scholarships for the coming academic year. Students eligible for the scholarship will receive the following assistance:

Annual tuition fee waiver
Maintenance support
Annual accommodation fee waiver
The Stand Alone pledge helps institutions to develop support to enable estranged students to succeed in their studies and beyond.

Pledging to Stand Alone would mean the university is committed to supporting students who are studying without the support or approval of a family network.

Work has begun on fulfilling the commitments required to meet the Stand Alone pledge.

Vice Chancellor, Professor Jane Harrington said:

“Here at the University of Greenwich, we are an active member of a global community and are proud that our own community is diverse and is made up of people from across the world. By signing up to both pledges, we are committed to providing support to those in need in a number of ways that remove barriers to education faced by students in extreme circumstances. With these commitments, we are sending a clear message to estranged students that they are not alone and we are here to help them.”

Nele Leitolf, Officer at the Greenwich Students’ Union, who worked on the submissions for the pledges said:

“In a time where the UK is unfortunately becoming more and more hostile towards refugees and asylum seekers, initiatives like the University of Sanctuary Scheme become more and more important. I very much appreciate the university’s decision to become University of Sanctuary, and express commitment to providing education regardless of background, and look forward to working towards this together as university and Students’ Union. I hope to see a culture of welcome embedded at more education institutions in the UK and am happy that Greenwich is a part of that movement, which current and future students will benefit from for years to come.”

Yasinur Rashid Jabed”., fellow Officer at the Greenwich Students’ Union, and who also worked on the submissions for the pledges said:

“Life as a refugee or an asylum seeker is not easy, especially for asylum seekers with limited or no support. Asylum seekers can have to wait years to get a response on their claim and may struggle to find a job even if they are fit to work. All this puts asylum seekers in limbo while waiting for their claim decisions.

“It’s a great step for our university to increase scholarships for estranged students to become a University of Sanctuary and signing the Stand-Alone Pledge. It will enable estranged students to access education and alleviate their sufferings.

I really appreciate this and I am sure our student body appreciates it as well!”