5 universities offering scholarships for refugees and displaced persons

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Education is a basic right, but it may be difficult for refugees and displaced persons to secure an education while they are living in a foreign country due to their status as foreign nationals. After all, war has a way of pulling the rug on any plansFortunately, many universities worldwide are aware of the struggles refugees and displaced persons face. Here’s how they are helping them realise their dreams of a foreign education.

refugees and displaced persons

War and civil unrest mean refugees and displaced persons face disruption to their lives and education. Source: Wojtek Radwanski/AFP

5 universities offering scholarships for refugees and displaced students

1. University of London

The University of London is providing 28 full-fee scholarships, allowing refugees and displaced persons to study for online degrees regardless of location.

The degree programmes in this scheme include undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes across various disciplines, such as accounting and financial management, computer science, business administration, marketing and law.

The application is open to students who have secured an offer to study one of the programmes. Click here for details.

2. University of Essex

As part of the University of Sanctuary Scholarship for Afghan Refugees programme, the University of Essex is offering a full fee waiver for up to five undergraduate or postgraduate students who will study at the university for the 2022-23 academic term. Among the eligibility requirements include:

  • Refugees from Afghanistan and have been granted UK Asylum status or Discretionary/Limited Leave to Remain due to an asylum application
  • Those with Humanitarian Protection, as a result of an asylum application or through a dependants’ claim

Aside from the full-fee waiver, the scholarship will also cover university accommodation and a 5,000 pounds bursary to support living and study costs for refugees and displaced persons.

Interested students must apply for admission by November 20, 2022 at midnight (GMT) if they plan to enrol at the University of Essex in January 2023. Click here for details.

refugees and displaced persons

Some of the universities cover full tuition fees for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes for refugees and displaced persons. Source: Philippe Lopez/AFP

3. Columbia University Scholarship for Displaced Students

Columbia University offers scholarships to support displaced students around the globe who are unable to complete their higher education. To be eligible to apply for this scholarship, here are some requirements to satisfy:

  • You have refugee status living anywhere in the world
  • You have received US asylum or submitted a US asylum application
  • You are in the US under Temporary Protected Status
  • You are an Internally Displaced Persons
  • You are a displaced Afghan student on Humanitarian Parole or with Special Immigrant Visas

The scholarship will cover their full tuition, housing, and living assistance as they pursue their undergraduate or graduate degrees across all 19 Columbia schools and affiliates. Students will also receive mentoring and support from the scholarship body, schools and student groups of Columbia University.

While they are not accepting applications for the academic programmes during Fall 2022, check their website when the application re-opens.

4. Yesbud University

Yesbud University, a university in Zambia, offers a Refugee Scholarship programme, which will cover all tuition fees and registration fees for foreign nationals who have refugee status living anywhere in the world to study any programme at the university.

Application for the scholarship will mirror the regular admission process to study at Yesbud University. Once students are admitted to the programme they have applied for, they will be eligible to apply for the scholarship.

Click here for more details.

5. University of Glasgow

Last on our list of scholarships for refugees and displaced persons is one by the University of Glasgow.

The university provides scholarships for applicants in the UK on humanitarian grounds who are struggling to progress onto higher education. This scholarship will cover undergraduate and postgraduate taught courses at the university.

This scholarship provides a full tuition fee waiver for the duration of study where refugees or displaced persons are not eligible to cover their full tuition fees through public funds. It also provides an annual £5,000 stipend and university accommodation when required.

While the 2022-23 academic intake application has closed, we highly recommend you check the university’s website when the scholarship application re-opens for the next academic cycle.



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