De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) is visiting Poland to talk openly to prospective students about what triggering Article 50 means for higher education in the UK.
The UK government is on the brink of enacting the piece of legislation which will formally begin the process of leaving the EU, following the country’s referendum result last June.
Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to trigger Article 50 by the end of March and DMU will mark the occasion with a visit to Warsaw, to meet with prospective students, media and higher education experts to discuss the consequences of the process.
The university will hold an event at the Marriott Hotel in Warsaw on March 29 from 11.45am to 2pm.
It is the second time in a year DMU has travelled to the Polish capital, following its visit in July last year, in the weeks following the referendum result, where senior staff and Polish students from the university talked about the benefits of international study and dispelled many of the myths which had sprung up about post-Brexit access and rights to work and study in the UK.
The visit was one of the first moves of DMU’s #LoveInternational campaign, created in response to the referendum result.
Vice-Chancellor Professor Dominic Shellard wanted to reassure existing staff and students of their right to remain in the UK and work to engage and encourage international students in the uncertain period following the referendum.
The campaign involved numerous trips to European cities – including Berlin, Warsaw, Vilnius and Stockholm – meeting with prospective students, answering their questions and showing the benefits of international study.
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By January 2017, DMU’s undergraduate EU applications had risen 29 per cent, bucking a national decline in numbers of 7.43 per cent.
Polish students in particular have responded to DMU, with the number of applications from prospective Polish students rising 70 per cent since last summer.
Polish students will join senior staff – including the Vice-Chancellor – in a reception and presentation open to Polish media, where the qualities of international study and the impact of Brexit will be openly discussed
Vice-Chancellor Professor Dominic Shellard said: “During a time of great change, some things remain the same. We, at DMU, are proud to have stepped forward in the last nine months to assure our friends and partners around the world, and particularly in Europe, that our international instinct and global outlook are stronger than ever.
“We acted quickly and decisively after the EU referendum to say that our university will always welcome international students. We were particularly happy that our message was heard by our friends in Poland, where we have seen applications to DMU rise 70 per cent since last summer.
“The friendships we have here in Poland are natural expressions of a shared belief in diversity, openness and inclusiveness. We are honoured to be travelling to Warsaw again, and to be able to underline how important those friendships are.”
Posted on Tuesday 28th March 2017