Universities and students in Scotland to face Brexit ‘double-whammy’ - People's Vote

Universities and students in Scotland to face Brexit ‘double-whammy’

From Edinburgh to Strathclyde, and from Aberdeen to St Andrews, Scotland prides itself on its history of providing world-class education and cutting-edge university research.

But students and universities across Scotland are facing a double-whammy from Brexit as the UK government’s failure to protect Scots from the harsh effects of Brexit will cause disruption to study programmes, and is already damaging vital research funding.

School leavers finding out this week whether they have been accepted to Scotland’s universities are facing a blow to their study ambitions due to the UK potentially losing access to the EU’s Erasmus scheme as a result of Brexit.

Currently, students and university staff are able to go on study abroad trips and training courses in other EU countries. Hundreds of students make use of this opportunity every year, with 4,631 students from Scottish universities going abroad to study or work on placements between 2014 and 2016. But Brexit poses a direct risk to Scotland’s access to this vital programme, which could see these unique opportunities to gain experience abroad restricted for future generations.

And Scottish universities which currently benefit from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research funding programme to the tune of £472 million could lose out on access to that vital funding. The effects of the damaging cuts caused by Brexit have already been felt at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, which had to make savings of £14 million and cut 100 jobs. 

 

Projects that rely on Horizon 2020 funding in Scotland include:

University of Glasgow

  • Scientists at the University of Glasgow are part of a Europewide consortium that has been awarded a Horizon 2020 grant of €7.6 million to improve the diagnosis and treatment of patients with endocrine hypertension, which affects up to 45% of the general population.
  • The University of Glasgow is also leading a €4 million EU-funded project to develop a novel form of ultra-fast wireless data transfer with EU universities and private-sector companies.

 

The University of St Andrews

  • The University of St Andrews has secured €3.5 million from Horizon 2020 as part of a consortium of eight leading academic and industry partners to study advanced computing.
  • This latest tranche of EU funding will keep the University at the forefront of software technology, and follows on from a highly successful €4.2 million EU project to improve the programmability and performance of modern parallel computing technologies.

 

The University of Edinburgh

  • Holoxica, a holographic imaging specialist based in Edinburgh, has secured £1 million funding from Horizon 2020 SME Instrument to help develop its pioneering medical imaging technology.

Hundreds of people are expected to take part in a rally in Edinburgh’s Festival Square this Saturday August 18th to demand a People’s Vote and a final say on Brexit.

 

Professor Malcolm Macleod, Professor of Neurology and Translational Neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh, who is speaking at the People’s Vote rally for Scotland in Edinburgh on Saturday, said:

“British universities are rightly regarded as being among the best in the world, and students from across Scotland and the rest of the UK who have been accepted to a university expect the very best in teaching, facilities, research and opportunities.

“But now the damage to our vital research funding, universities and student opportunities which would be caused by a bad Brexit deal is all too clear. To protect our future we must have a say on the final deal. That’s why I will be joining hundreds of others in Festival Square on Saturday to demand a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal.”

/ends

 

Notes to editors

Scotland has seven universities in the top 50 within the UK for EU funding, according to Government figures (link).

 

Organisation Name

Total participations

EC funding to organisation (€ millions)

University of Edinburgh

209

                             144

University of Glasgow

120

                               62

University of St Andrews

48

                               26

University of Strathclyde

69

                               24

University of Dundee

46

                               22

University of Aberdeen

44

                               17

Heriot-Watt University

37

22

 

Heriot-Watt University job losses due to Brexit: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/university-blames-brexit-for-100-job-cuts-n928ttrwz

Students from Scotland’s Universities taking part in the Erasmus scheme 2014-2016

University

Students going abroad to study

Students going abroad to work

Total

Edinburgh Napier University

217

22

239

Heriot-Watt University

344

11

355

Moray College Uhi

1

-

1

Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh

12

-

12

Royal Conservatoire Of Scotland

17

1

18

Sruc

2

-

2

Inverness College Uhi

2

-

2

The Glasgow Caledonian University

251

28

279

The Glasgow School Of Art Lbg

82

17

99

The Robert Gordon University

245

45

290

The Scottish Association For Marinescience LBG

11

3

14

The University Court Of The University Of Aberdeen

246

75

321

The University Court Of The University Of Abertay Dundee

29

5

34

The University Court Of The University Of St Andrews

134

114

248

The University Of Edinburgh

731

270

1001

The University Of Stirling

124

6

130

University Of Dundee

81

42

123

University Of Glasgow

404

249

653

University Of Strathclyde

492

169

661

University Of The West Of Scotland

139

10

149

Between 2014 and 2016 (Erasmus Plus statistics, accessed August 2018, link)