Skip to main content

We have EXTREMELY exciting news. The Open University has applied for recognition as a University of Sanctuary.

This means they’ve pledged to offer welcome and safety to those forced to flee. These are their real term commitments:

  • a three-year scholarship scheme starting 2022, offering a minimum of 12 scholarships per year at undergraduate and postgraduate level
  • each of the university’s four faculties to host an at-risk Afghan scholar for two years, and the university to work with the Council for At-Risk Academics to build a long-term strategy to offer sanctuary to such academics
  • courses in English language and other skills to support the transition to higher education offered on the university’s free learning portal OpenLearn
  • a ‘flag’ system that will enable the university to identify and appropriately support students from a forced migrant background

The decision to seek University of Sanctuary status is ‘fantastic news’, said Professor Gillespie.

“Our reach and scale makes us ideal for this role, we encompass all four UK nations and have learning material accessible from anywhere in the world.

“The Open University’s ethos is ‘open to all’. What better way to fulfill this than by serving the needs of the most vulnerable members of society?”

Read the Open University’s press release here.

Find out more about the University of Sanctuary network here.