British Students Could Be Excluded From The Erasmus Scheme Following Brexit

Students in the UK are at risk of being excluded from Erasmus following last month’s referendum result to leave the European Union.

Speaking to The Guardian, the scheme’s UK director, Ruth Sinclair-Jones, said it’s only guaranteed until 2017. After that, it’s unclear whether the UK will be allowed to participate.

“In the long term, it’s an unknown situation. We will continue with our plans until 2017 but after that we have to wait” she said.

The Erasmus scheme was launched in 1987 and has seen over 2 million students benefit from EU grants to study across Europe.

If Britain’s Brexit deal doesn’t include freedom of movement, UK students could find themselves excluded from such grants – making studying in Europe an almost impossible reality for those unable to fund something themselves.

Exclusion would also see a huge drop in the number of EU students studying in the UK – there are currently around 27,000 undertaking the scheme.

Universities UK, a body which promotes higher education in Britain, calculated that EU students pay £600m in tuition fees and bring in around £1.5bn in non-academic spending.

Sinclair-Jones concluded by saying: “We’re a European country… I very much hope the UK can negotiate a deal that keeps us in full membership of the programme.”