Vice-Chancellor reassures EU nationals in the face of Article 50
He aimed to calm fears over fee rises and residency rights
“As we enter this unprecedented moment in our country’s history, the University of Cambridge’s main concern is –and will remain—the welfare of its staff and students, both current and prospective.”
The Vice-Chancellor of the University, Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, has released a statement to reassure EU nationals amongst the students and faculty of Cambridge that the University is doing everything it can to ensure a smooth transition to Brexit Britain.
Cambridge is host to a huge number of EU students, who according to Sir Leszek “contribute enormously to the University of Cambridge’s success, to the diversity of our community, and to our values of openness, inclusion and mutual respect.”
Borysiewicz has been actively petitioning the UK government to preserve the rights of EU citizens to study and teach at Cambridge. He said: “University leaders at Cambridge and elsewhere have repeatedly expressed to the UK government the need to protect the rights of EU nationals in the UK.” This is surely a testament to the considerable impact that EU nationals have on university life.
It’s clear that the University authorities are concerned that a deal (if any) that comes out of Brexit negotiations could jeopardise the rights of EU students and teachers to remain in Cambridge with no questions asked. If no provision is made for these people then they may be subject to the rules applied to none EU international students.
Fees for international students from outside of the EU stretch to the tens of thousands, and stringent earning requirements have been placed upon foreign workers. This suggests that any measures to restrict access for EU nationals may result in a serious brain drain.
The Vice-Chancellor has however assured Cantabs that “expert analysis on all aspects of the Brexit process” will be available at all times and that the University will provide “regularly updated practical information for students and staff.”
The future of EU nationals at Cambridge is secure for the next two years and the University authorities are committed to ensuring maximum protection for EU nationals as the Brexit process commences.