- Financial support for refugee students
- Health services
- Help desk and supporting services for refugee students
- Housing for refugee students
- Language and other introductory courses for refugee students
- Recognition of studies and prior learning for refugee students
- Social Events
- Tutoring and peer support for refugee students
- University policies on access to higher education
DESCRIPTION AND METHODOLOGIES
Since 2019, Luiss University enriched its Global Engagement Strategy promoting the human capital of young refugees and offering the possibility to study in Luiss University for refugees coming from African countries. In September 2019, Luiss University welcomed one Eritrean student who is a UNHCR refugee in Ethiopia and this action has been possible thanks to the cooperation of UNHCR and to the fund-raising of the Luiss Alumni Association (ALL).
Now the student attends the master’s degree program in “Corporate Finance” in Rome and he receives a scholarship that covers the University tuition fee, the teaching materials, the access to the University canteen, a monthly pocket money, the cost of travel and the stay in the Luiss residence for the 2 academic years.
Regarding the next edition, ALL and Luiss University are offering 1 scholarship for the a.y. 2020-2021 for master’s degree programs taught in English, open to refugee students – UNHCR registered – in Ethiopia.
The objectives of this project are:
- Encouraging the refugees’ education and the development of their talents
- Promotion of education of the youth in disadvantaged communities or countries
- Dissemination of a global citizenship awareness and of a respectful culture towards diversity
- Giving a concrete contribution in the growth of a generation of cosmopolitan, supportive and responsible future leaders
The project includes several activities such as:
- Development of a mobility plan in cooperation with UNHCR and the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs because the target refugees are protected in a third country.
- Support for the student in the organization of the travel and in the production of the required documents.
- Welcome activities after his/her arrival in Rome such as: the preparation of the required documents for the request of the residency permit; social inclusion activities during the so-called “Welcome Week” dedicated to the inclusion of international students in the campus; training about the Italian University system; tutoring activities dedicated to the presentation of the Italian lifestyle.
- Tutoring activities with University Tutors and Academic Tutors during the year. Those activities are essential in order to guarantee the social inclusion of the refugee students in the students’ community and in the teams, the correct development of their studies in such a different multicultural teaching and assessment system. The Academic Tutors also provide support to the refugee students for all the subjects that may require a further help to integrate the knowledge of the students.
- Training of the members of the faculty involved. The professors of the refugee students – especially during their first semester – are informed about the program and the possible criticalities that may arise in the first weeks of classes. All the faculty members involved in the project cooperate in order to guarantee the integration of the refugee students and the development of their careers.
- Networking activities are organized with several Luiss offices and organizations such as Luiss Sport or the Language Café team. Those teams are important because they allow the personal expression and development of each single student.
- Dissemination activities are organized in order to communicate the results and the values of the program. For instance, on February 13th the Luiss Alumni Association organized an event called “Alumnus 2019” in order to raise funds for another scholarship for the a.y. 2020-2021 and in this occasion the current program has been presented. The refugee student, who is currently studying in Luiss, presented his story and communicated the goals of the project and Luiss President mentioned this project as an example of all the Luiss values.
RESULTS AND IMPACT
The first impact is measurable on the conditions of life of the students themselves since these students could not access to excellent higher education or study in Europe, in an international environment.
The development of the program is measurable thanks to the development of the careers of the students who pass their exams scheduled in their academic calendar.
Moreover, the impact of this project is produced within the whole University community: among the members of the staff who started to focus their attention on “extra-ordinary” issues such as the recognition of refugees’ documents which can be critical or the organization of the mobility which is different than the mobility of any other international students. The faculty together with the University tutors and the Academic tutors have been responsible and empowered for the development of the students’ careers while the whole community of the students became much more aware about the theme of refugees’ conditions, an issue that is particularly important for Italy. The participation of the Luiss Alumni Association supported the communication of the values of the promotion of the refugees’ talents among the network of the Luiss Alumni all over the world.