Access to higher education is a crucial factor in empowering individuals and fostering global progress. However, for refugees and asylum seekers, pursuing university education can often seem like an unattainable dream due to numerous barriers. Recognizing the significance of education for displaced individuals, universities and organizations worldwide have established scholarship programs specifically designed to support and empower refugee students. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore various scholarship opportunities available in different countries and continents, shedding light on the eligibility criteria, application procedures, and benefits offered by these initiatives.
Albert Einstein Academic Refugee Initiative (DAFI):
The Albert Einstein Academic Refugee Initiative, also known as DAFI, is a scholarship program that enables qualified refugee students to pursue undergraduate degrees in their country of asylum. In collaboration with the German Government, UNHCR, and private donors, DAFI has successfully supported over 18,000 young refugees since its inception in 1992. The program covers tuition fees, provides books, monthly stipends, housing assistance, local transportation expenses, health insurance, and even offers mentoring or psycho-social support. Students from a wide range of countries, including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Iraq, Pakistan, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, among others, are eligible to apply.
World University Service of Canada (WUSC):
The Student Refugee Program, managed by the World University Service of Canada (WUSC), offers a unique opportunity for young refugees to combine resettlement in Canada with access to post-secondary education. Although not a traditional scholarship program, the initiative sponsors students for one year, providing them with essential financial and social support. WUSC accepts applications from eligible applicants residing in Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Tanzania, and Uganda. To be eligible, candidates must be refugees living in one of these countries, have completed secondary school, demonstrate competency in English or French, and meet the general eligibility requirements for resettlement under Canada’s Private Sponsorship of Refugees program.
Odysseus Academic Network:
The Odysseus Academic Network aims to address the asylum situation in Europe by offering refugee students the opportunity to gain knowledge in European immigration and asylum law. The network facilitates integration by enabling engagement with European academics and promoting the continuation of interrupted studies due to forced displacement. Preference is given to recently recognized beneficiaries of international protection, and applicants should hold at least a Bachelor’s degree in Law or a related discipline, or possess equivalent professional experience in relevant fields. Proficiency in English or French is required to participate in this valuable academic endeavor.
The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships:
The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans is a prestigious program honoring the contributions of immigrants and refugees to the United States. This fellowship focuses on individuals who demonstrate creativity, originality, initiative, and a commitment to values expressed in the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Fellows receive financial support and are selected based on their potential for continued significant contributions in their respective fields. The program encourages candidates who have a graduate training relevant to their long-term career goals and the potential to enhance future creativity and accomplishment.
The International Telematic University UNINETTUNO:
The International Telematic University UNINETTUNO offers 50 scholarships to students entitled to international protection, with the aim of promoting their academic development and facilitating their professional integration in the hosting country. The beneficiaries can enroll in any of the degree courses offered by the online university free of charge. UNINETTUNO, with its diverse student body from over 140 countries, provides a unique educational platform available in five languages: Italian, English, French, Arabic, and Greek. Prospective students can reach out to UNINETTUNO through their website and explore the scholarship opportunities specifically tailored for refugees and asylum seekers.
NINETTUNO University has, among its enrolled students, people coming from over 140 countries and its educational portal (www.uninettunouniversity.net) is the only one across the world that is realized in 5 languages (Italian, English, French, Arabic and Greek).
The students who are interested in this initiative can get in touch with the following UNINETTUNO contact people:
People in charge of the Secretariat
Mr. Raffaele Carracoy
Dr. Tiziana Giovannelli
Tel: +39 06 692076 50 / +39 06 692076 88
Monash Humanitarian Scholarship
Monash Humanitarian Scholarship is for asylum seeker or students with a bridging visa.
Successful applicants receive 100% international student funding for the Monash undergraduate degree of your choice plus a yearly allowance of $6000.
- A person who is in Australia and currently on:
- a Bridging Visa E, or
- a Bridging Visa A and has applied for a Permanent Protection visa, or
- a Temporary Protection Visa, or
- a Safe Haven Enterprise Visa.
- A commencing or continuing student enrolled or intending to enrol in an undergraduate degree as an international student at a Monash campus in Australia.
- Have achieved a minimum ATAR of 70.00
- You must maintain a pass average (50% or above) each semester.
- You can continue to receive the scholarship if your residency changes, however you will not be eligible to continue to receive tuition payments if you are changed to a Commonwealth Supported Place and are eligible to defer your fees, but you may continue to receive the allowance.
- You may be asked to provide an annual progress report to donors, giving you an opportunity to share your experiences and benefits.
Goldsmiths University of London International Response Scholarship
£8,825 allowance A full tuition fee waiver for each year of study Accommodation fee for a single study bedroom in Goldsmiths halls of residence (up to £200 per week)
Up to four (two for undergraduate students; two for postgraduate taught students)
You must meet the general eligibility criteria and regulations. You must also:
- Have refugee status in the UK, or have an active application for asylum in the UK (you will be required to provide documentation to demonstrate your status). Supporting documents should be uploaded to your MyGoldsmiths account.
- Be holding an offer of study on an undergraduate or taught postgraduate degree at Goldsmiths.