UEA has responded to concerns from the international student community after the UK Border Agency’s (UKBA) recent decision to revoke London Metropolitan University’s licence to sponsor non-EU students.
In a statement issued to the press, the University asserted that it took its responsibilities to “comply with visa regulations extremely seriously and its UKBA highly trusted sponsor status is completely secure. No UEA students will be adversely affected by the difficulties at London Metropolitan University.”
The highly trusted sponsor status (HTS) is designed for use by universities to ensure that students entering the country via the education system do so with the intention to study rather than to work illegally.
Commenting on UEA’s position, vice-chancellor Prof. Edward Acton said: “International students enrich our campus community beyond measure, enhancing the student experience for all.
“Talented students come to UEA from more than 100 countries worldwide and we look forward to welcoming both the new intake and our returning students next week.”
An external examination of London Met’s files by UKBA found that the university was failing to adequately monitor its students in the manner required by the HTS programme, which includes checking the validity of a student’s UK visa, testing English language skills, as well as monitoring attendance and academic progress.
Around 2,600 students currently face deportation from the UK. Immigration minister Damian Green said London Met’s administration and monitoring of international students had encountered a “serious systematic failure” that was identified six months ago.
The Union of UEA Students is asking international students to email any concerns they may have to firstname.lastname@example.org