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EU student funding guarantee for Welsh universities announced

EU students applying for a place at Welsh universities for the 2018/19 academic year will be eligible for financial support, Education Secretary Kirsty Williams announced on Mon 24 April.

EU nationals who are currently in receipt of student loans from Student Finance Wales and those EU nationals who intend to begin studying in the academic year 2018/19 will be eligible for support from loans and grants.

EU students should consult their university’s student finance office, or the Student Finance Wales website, for information about the support available.

Kirsty Williams said,

“Wales has an internationally renowned higher education sector and it is vital that we continue to attract bright students from around the world to study and research at our universities.

“This decision not only provides welcome certainty for our universities and colleges regarding future funding, but also assures prospective EU students they will not have the terms of their funding changed if the UK leaves the EU during their studies.

“Our universities are central to our social and economic future, which value and celebrate their links with Europe, and thrive through the diversity of the people who come to them.

“We are determined to protect Wales’ reputation as a friendly and tolerant place to study and carry out world-class research. Whatever the long-term implication of the referendum result, we remain an outward looking and welcoming nation where we are committed to sharing knowledge across national borders.”

Notes

Current students and those applying to start study in the remainder of the 2016/17 Academic year

EU nationals or their family members, currently in higher or further education, and who are eligible to receive loans and/or grants from Student Finance Wales (‘SFW’) will continue to remain eligible for these loans and grants until they finish their course. This applies to all student finance provided to eligible EU students by SFW. This includes support to cover tuition fees, loans and grants for maintenance, and some other grants and allowances. These students are also entitled to home fee status. This also applies to students who have not yet started their course, but who will do so before the end of the 2016/17 Academic Year.

Students beginning study in the 2017/18 and 2018/19 Academic years

As for students studying in the 2016/17 Academic Year, the eligibility rules regarding student support and home fee status applying to EU nationals, or their family members, who wish to enter the UK to study a course in Wales which starts in either the 2017/18 or the 2018/19 Academic Year and which attracts student support, are also unchanged. SFW will assess these applications against existing eligibility criteria, and will provide loans and/or grants in the normal way. EU nationals, or their family members, who are assessed as eligible to receive grants and/or loans by SFW will then be eligible for this support and for home fee status for the duration of their course.