Invited by the University of Birmingham Conservatives, controversial backbench MP Jacob Rees-Mogg visited campus on Friday 9th March, speaking about his views on free speech, housing, mental health, Russia and tuition fees to a packed lecture theatre of around 300 students.Written by Erin Santillo & John Wimperis on 16th March 2018
Guild passes motion to support student refugees
ON Thursday the 29th of October Guild Council passed a motion to support STAR’s (Student Action for Refugees) nationwide campaign on ‘Equal Access to Higher Education for R...
ON Thursday the 29th of October Guild Council passed a motion to support STAR’s (Student Action for Refugees) nationwide campaign on 'Equal Access to Higher Education for Refugees and Asylum Seekers'. This motion mandates the guild executive to pressurize the university to make higher education more accessible for asylum seekers and refugees.
Asylum seekers are those that are waiting to be granted or refused refugee status, which gives them leave to stay in the UK. This can be a very lengthy procedure and during this time asylum seekers are not allowed to work or apply for grants or loans. For many asylum seekers this makes university unattainable.
Currently the University of Birmingham classifies asylum seekers as international students in regards to fees. This means they must pay university fees from £9,880 - £23,350 a year. STAR calls for The University of Birmingham to reclassify asylum seekers as 'Home Students' for tuition fee purposes and provide grants or bursaries to those in financial hardship.
Prior to this campaign Edge Hill University, Leeds University, Liverpool Hope University, London Metropolitan, Manchester Metropolitan, Middlesex and Wolverhampton changed their admission policies to aid asylum seekers in their quest for higher education.
This motion is thought to lead to similar changes in policy for the University of Birmingham. As a first step, it calls for a letter signed by the guild executive to be sent to relevant people within the university asking them to examine and show the importance of removing the barriers in place. This letter and the reply will be put on the Redbrick website.