Coventry University statement as the UK begins the process of exiting the EU
Wednesday 29 March 2017
As the UK begins the process of leaving the EU by triggering of Article 50 today (29 March) we want to ensure that there is no doubt among members of our community and our partners – at home and abroad – about Coventry University’s commitment to Europe and its continued global engagement.
The British public voted to leave the EU, not Europe, so we fully envisage our diverse staff and student body continuing to benefit from the best and brightest minds and ideas from around the continent gravitating – particularly through programmes like Erasmus – towards the UK and to Coventry for many years to come.
We value our 2,000 EU students extremely highly and will continue to welcome them.
That is not to say we do not face a challenge. As the UK embarks on its exit from the EU, we will be working hard to champion the contribution that students, colleagues and collaborators from across Europe make to ensuring Britain’s higher education system remains the best, and most welcoming, in the world.
Coventry University therefore has the following messages
If you study with us
You are an essential part of what makes our campus so vibrant and our learning environment in Coventry so rich and rewarding, wherever you come from. We know that EU students in particular may be concerned about fees and immigration status. Let us reassure you of three things -
In 2016, Coventry University moved quickly to guarantee that EU students’ fees would not exceed UK fees for the following five years.
Your eligibility for Erasmus grants and student loans still stands and will last the duration of your course.
The UK’s exit will have no immediate impact on your immigration status, and that will remain the case until the UK government has progressed its negotiations with the EU.
If you teach or research with us
Whether you’re a UK, EU or overseas national, the difference you make in the lecture theatres, research labs and ‘engine room’ of the university can be life-changing for our students and for society. Knowledge and experience shared through staff mobility and joint research programmes across Europe define Coventry as an outward-looking university, and ensure it is at the forefront of some of the continent’s most constructive cross-border projects. We’re resolved to supporting talented people from EU countries to come to work and continue working in this country, and reaffirm the message that the UK’s exit will have no immediate impact on the immigration status of our EU staff.
If you collaborate with us
Coventry University remains every bit as committed to our collaborative project activity across Europe as we were before the referendum vote, and can reassure you that – unless we are informed otherwise – no projects that are already underway or have secured funding are at risk, including those forming part of the Horizon 2020 programme. Links that we have built with like-minded higher education institutions and organisations across Europe – from evaluating hydrogen fuel cell technologies to analysing the Mediterranean migration crisis – often reap positive societal and economic impacts, and as long as they do, collaborations with partners across Europe will remain a key part of Coventry’s global activity.
Whatever outcome emerges from the UK government’s negotiations with the EU, we will support our entire university community through the next stages. Already we are underlining our commitment to activity on the continent with the recent establishment of a Brussels office – which we intend to expand in the near future – and we’re offering overseas students, including those from the EU, around £2 million worth of scholarships to study here.
Coventry University will be working hard during the coming months, in conversation with the government, to clarify precisely what the UK's exit means for our EU students and staff – if you are one of them, then you will be amongst the first to know of future developments.