An International Committee meeting held on 3 February has debated the introduction of a new scheme of international student scholarships.
The meeting, attended by various senior university officials including the Deputy Vice Chancellor, discussed the possibility of increasing scholarships available to international students in the form of Vice Chancellor and country-specific scholarships.
Such reform could come in the shape of 79 country specific scholarships, 10 non country specific scholarships and a continuation of the 10 Vice Chancellor scholarships.
Current university spending on international scholarships ranges from £45 000 to £50 000. With the new scheme in place, funding for these opportunities would increase to £350 000 in the first year of the scheme, reaching £400 000 by the third year of its implementation.
While more senior university officials are needed to approve the scheme, an attendee of the committee meeting and International Officer Roberto Avelar Vargas noted that there was “broad support around the table” for the motion which should be in place by 2018-19.
The new international scholarship provisions look set to incentivise students to consider applying to York in a post-Brexit climate as well as encouraging students who cannot afford the higher fees demanded of students from overseas.
Of the four options put to the committee on 3 February, the option most favoured by the committee highlighted the ability of the country-specific scholarships to target “the markets with the greatest recruitment potential” in the hope that those markets will “respond favourably to a scholarship offer”. Further to this, the scheme aims to boost the quality and the number of applications, in turn improving diversity at York.
The country-specific scholarships would aim to also target “less price-sensitive mature markets” like the USA, China and Hong Kong in order to acknowledge the “prestige value” of these markets.
The aforementioned option most favoured by the committee also acknowledges the importance of non-country-specific scholarships and Vice Chancellor scholarships to compliment country specific scholarships. The former enables any international student of outstanding calibre the chance of a taught scholarship, whilst the latter introduces “a financial need element” to requirements for those particular scholarships.