Oxford University dismissed talk of an influx of foreign
students this week, following Saturday’s admission of ten
new states to the European Union. The number of students wishing to study in the UK from one of
those states, Cyprus, doubled in 2004 to 1,458. As EU students,
they will not be eligible for maintenance grants or loans. A
spokesperson for the University, told Cherwell that, “Oxford
is not expecting a massive influx,” and praised the
diversity and tolerance of the student body. There are currently
4,600 non-UK students at Oxford, but only 106 are from the new EU
states. Foreign students are estimated to pay £31.5 billion a year in
fees, and contribute £33 billion to the economy. Although
students from the EU pay lower fees than those from elsewhere,
they are expected to cover their own living costs. As a result,
Ana Perez de Ayala, a Spanish second year Physics student,
believes “the main difficulties for foreign students are
financial ones.” The University, which claims to have “rigorous methods of
distinguishing between very able candidates”, also quashed
suggestions that they would introduce a lottery system for
oversubscribed courses. Both Leeds Metropolitan and Huddersfield
University operate the scheme for physiology, which receives
twenty applications for every place.ARCHIVE: 1st week TT 2004