By Ryan Gould
Students from the European Union who will begin their studies in the academic years 2016/17, 2017/18, and 2018/19 will pay the same tuition fee as UK students for the duration of their course, the University has indicated.
In a statement to Palatinate, the University said that it is its “intention that European Union students starting their studies in Durham in 2016, 2017, and 2018 will pay the same tuition fee as UK students for the duration of their course.”
The news comes amidst general uncertainty surrounding a “hard” and “soft” Brexit, both inside and outside the higher education sector, as the Government negotiates the terms of leaving the European Union.
“It is important to note that no significant changes will take place within the next two years, during which time EU laws will continue to apply in the UK,” a spokesperson for the University told Palatinate.
“Full details of the UK’s post-Brexit arrangements with the EU and the rest of the world will emerge through this period and beyond.”
Since the vote to leave the European Union was announced, the University has set up a steering group to “lead on scenario planning for what lies ahead.”
The University also stressed to Palatinate that students currently overseas on an Erasmus+ placement, and those who are considering applying to participate in Eramus+ in 2016/17, “will not be affected by the referendum result.”
“Please be assured that Durham University will play a full part in pressing for future arrangements that best support its continuing ambitions to be a leading world and European university,” Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart Corbridge, said.
“Knowledge has no borders; we flourish because we are an inclusive and outward looking community.
“I and the University Executive Committee members are immensely proud of the contributions of all of our staff members and students.”
Durham University will be joining other Russell Group and Universities UK members to press the Government for early reassurances about the rights of EU nationals to work and study in the UK.
In July, a report by BBC’s Newsnight programme indicated that European academic bodies are pulling back from research collaboration with UK academics amidst uncertainty about the future of higher education in the UK.
BBC Newsnight said that it was aware of concerns raised by academics from Durham, Oxford, Cambridge, Bristol, and Exeter.
Universities UK has estimated that more than 60% of the UK’s international research partners originate from countries within the EU, with collaboration with other EU institutions growing at a faster rate than relationships with other partners in countries like the US or China.
It is estimated that more than 125,000 students from countries within the EU study are currently studying at UK universities, making up 5% of the entire student body.
Last month, The Guardian reported that British universities are considering plans to open branches inside the European Union in an effort to soften the blow of Britain’s exit from the EU, as universities struggle to navigate new challenges in regulation and funding.