Information for students
The University of Worcester can reassure its EU nationals who are receiving student loans that their situation remains unchanged.
The University has received authoritative advice from Universities UK that EU nationals who are currently at English universities and receiving student loans from the Student loans Company will continue to receive these grants until they finish their course.
This also applies to EU nationals who intend to start their studies this autumn.
A statement issued by the Student Loans Company says this includes loans to cover tuition fees (for those resident in the European Economic Area for three years), loans and grants for maintenance (limited to those resident in the UK for at least three years), and some other grants and allowances.
The rules applying to EU nationals, or their family members, who have applied for a place at university from this August to study a course which attracts student support are unchanged, the statement says.
The SLC will assess these applications against existing eligibility criteria and will provide loans and/or grants in the normal way. EU nationals found eligible can receive funding for the duration of their study on that course.
The University of Worcester currently has 441 students from the European Union out of a total student population of 11,151. These EU students come from 27 of the 28 EU countries.
To see the full Student Loans Company statement visit http://www.slc.co.uk/
If you have any concerns or questions, please contact Firstpoint on 01905 542551 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Information for staff and prospective staff
Over the coming weeks, months and years, the UK will be entering a period of transition while the Government negotiates the UK’s new position in Europe. Understanding the implications of leaving the EU and the effect this is likely to have on the UK Higher Education sector, and the University, is not yet known and will take a considerable amount of time to finalise.
The University of Worcester can reassure staff that it will, of course, remain deeply committed to our inclusive, human values.
We are proud to be an international and European community and profoundly value the contributions of all our members. We are sure that all colleagues at the University, whatever their views on other matters, will do all in their power to promote these values and approach in practice.
The University is aware that there is a considerable level of uncertainty and concern in the aftermath of the referendum. In particular, colleagues have expressed concerns about the University’s financial prospects, job security, financial arrangements for new and continuing EU students, potential changes to people’s right to work in the UK, the increase in hate crime and the very troubling rise in what might be termed ‘everyday racism’.
The University is working closely with Universities UK and others on these issues. In this connection, it is important to re-iterate that there will be no immediate changes to the UK’s immigration policies, including the existing rights for European citizens already living in the UK. The rights of employees from Europe to live and work in the UK remain as they are. Major change would require legislation through Parliament. Similarly, EU students will be able to borrow money from the Student Loan Company exactly as before. The government department responsible (BIS) has already confirmed that this will apply to new students from 2016-17 and that these arrangements will apply for the duration of their course.
We also understand that those colleagues who are citizens of countries in the European Union other than the UK may wish to consider the option of applying to the Home Office for Permanent Residency. This is potentially available to anyone who has been living in the UK continuously for 5 years and is also a necessary step in making an application for British Citizenship. Such colleagues who have been living in the UK for less than 5 years may wish to consider applying for a Registration Certificate. This will provide evidence of the period of stay to date and, depending on future legislative changes, may assist with a successful application for Permanent Residency.
Frequently asked questions
The University has developed some frequently asked questions which may be helpful to staff and others. These will be updated regularly as more information becomes available.
Q. How will the result affect non-UK EU nationals currently working at The University of Worcester?
A. The University of Worcester’s community includes approximately 60 staff from non-UK countries in the European Union and our staff are welcomed and valued no matter where they are from.
Until the UK has formally left the EU, previously agreed EU treaties will continue to apply, including the right of EU citizens to live and work in other member states. This means that in the short term we can be clear there will be no change to the immigration or employment status for this group of staff.
Over this period, the University will continue to seek advice and guidance from key agencies such as Universities UK on issues directly affecting non-UK EU staff after the UK has left the EU. The Government have provided information for European Union (EU) citizens about how to apply for either settled or pre-settled status which will allow them to continue living in the UK after December 2020, this can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families
Q. I am a non-UK EU national working at the University of Worcester. Is there anything I can do to secure my immigration status?
If you are a citizen of a country in the European Union you may want to consider the option of applying to the Home Office for Permanent Residency. This is potentially available to anyone who has been living in the UK continuously for five years and is also a necessary step if you wish to apply for British Citizenship.
If you have been living in the UK for less than five years you may consider applying for a Registration Certificate. This will provide evidence of your period of stay and, depending on future legislative changes, may assist with a successful application for Permanent Residency.
You may wish to check the UK Visa and Immigration website for more information: https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/settle-in-the-uk
Q. Will the University be able to employ staff from other EU countries in the future?
The UK remains a member of the EU for the time being and the government has confirmed that there will be no immediate changes to UK visa policies for individuals contemplating coming to the UK from the EU.
In terms of recruiting EU staff in the longer-term, advice from Universities UK is that this will depend on the kind of relationship the UK negotiates with the EU. They have confirmed their intention to work to ensure the UK government takes steps to preserve the free movement of EU researchers, scientists and academic staff.
Commentators agree that transitional arrangements for EU nationals already working and studying in the UK will form part of any negotiation but it is important to note that, until these negotiations have concluded, the immigration status of prospective staff will remain the same as they are now.
Q. I have seen a job I would like to apply for at the University of Worcester and I am a non-UK national. Is it worth me applying for the role?
The UK remains a welcoming and attractive destination as a place to work and the University of Worcester encourages any person who considers that they meet the criteria for the role to apply for the position.
Current eligibility to work criteria will continue to apply for non EEA candidates. Prospective applicants are advised to ensure that they are eligible to work in the UK without restriction. Further details can be found at the UKVI/Visa and Immigration website at https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/work-visas
Q. How will EU research funding be affected?
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has stressed that the referendum result has no immediate effect on UK researchers applying to or participating in the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme; the same also applies to EU programmes such as Erasmus+, Creative Europe and the Marie Sklodowska-Curie actions.
It is our specific understanding that the EU will honour all current EU grants and contracts within which UK organisations are participants. The University will therefore continue to ensure EU-funded projects are fully supported and delivered as set out in the original project agreement.
Universities UK is working with the UK Research Office and the European Commission and they have advised that detailed advice on EU funding will be circulated to Universities as soon as is possible.
Q. Should University of Worcester researchers still bid for EU funding?
Yes, absolutely. Whilst the issue of future UK access to EU research funding programmes is a matter for discussion, the Government has stressed its determination to ensure that the UK continues to play a fundamental and leading role in European and international research. UK researchers and European colleagues are urged to maintain and develop research collaborations and to continue to bid for EU funding during these discussions.
Q. Where can I find more information?
The University of Worcester is liaising with Universities UK, other universities and our UK, European and international partners to ensure the future of UK Universities, and ultimately our university, is not adversely affected by this decision. Information to our staff will be provided as it becomes known.
David Green, Vice Chancellor of the University of Worcester, has written a statement on the referendum result.
Universities UK has issued a statement on the outcome of the EU referendum.
The Government issued a statement on how the result will affect UK Higher Education.
Universities UK has also published a FAQ on its website, looking at some of the ramifications of the leave vote for the Higher Education sector.
Last updated: 12 July 2016, 9am