EU students starting university in 2020/21 academic year will have guaranteed home fee status and financial support for the duration of courses in England, the Universities Minister has announced today (28 May).
Speaking in Brussels today, Chris Skidmore announced that EU nationals who start a higher education course in England in the 2020/21 academic year will remain eligible for undergraduate and postgraduate financial support, Advanced Learner loans as well as FE and apprenticeships support, whether a deal for leaving the EU is in place or not.
The announcement follows the Government’s existing commitment on student finance for EU nationals starting courses in England in the 2019/20 academic year or before.
The latest 2019 application cycle data shows more than 37,000 EU students have applied for full-time undergraduate courses in England – an increase of 1.9 per cent on the previous year.
Universities Minister Chris Skidmore said:
We value the important contribution that international students, including those from the EU, make to our universities and it is a testament to our world-leading higher education system that so many students from abroad choose to come and study here.
It is important that we remember that while we have chosen to leave the EU, we are not leaving Europe, and our universities thrive on the diversity of being global institutions.
We know that students will be considering their university options for next year already, which is why we are confirming now that eligible EU nationals will continue to benefit from home fee status and can access financial support for the 20/21 academic year, so they have the certainty they need to make their choice.
The International Education Strategy, which aims to maintain and support further growth of the UK’s world-class education sector, included a commitment to extend the post-study leave period to six months for undergraduate and master’s students and a year for all doctoral students.
The strategy also helps universities to support international students into employment and considers how the visa process could be improved for international students.
The Government recognises the need to provide certainty for students and the sector, specifically for academic year 2020/21 as the recruitment process gets underway.
Work to determine the future fee status for new EU students after the 2020/21 academic year is ongoing as the Government prepares for a smooth and orderly exit from the EU as soon as possible.
The Government will provide sufficient notice for prospective EU students on fee arrangements ahead of the 2021/2022 academic year and subsequent years in future.