Nigerian Students Headhunted by UK Universities

Nigerian students who apply to Sheffield Hallam University can receive a £1,000 tuition fee discount if they apply to courses that start in September 2014. This bursary initiative is part of a plan to attract more international students into the university student body. Sheffield Hallam have spared no expense in advertising themselves to the Nigerian student market–they recently opened up offices in Lagos, hired local ambassadors and will be undertaking a bus tour in the hopes of recruiting some new faces for their UK campus. The initiative has made quite a few headlines and it seems as if the benefits of studying abroad remain attractive to young Nigerians.

Sheffield is the 5th largest city in the UK. It is located in the north-east of the country. During the 19th century it became one of England’s most important industrial towns, being at the forefront of steel production. Nowadays it is a bustling metropolitan city. Sheffield Hallam University peaked in the UK university league tables in 2012, and has since seen a slight drop off. It was

originally founded as an art and design college, before becoming a city Polytechnic and then growing into the fully-fledged university that we see today.

Sheffield Hallam offers a full range of courses on everything from accounting, finance, banking, teacher training, English, other languages, geography, biosciences, chemistry, and occupational therapy such as physiotherapy. At least 4,000 of the current 37,000 strong Sheffield Hallam cohort are international students, and the student union has several clubs for students of different nationalities to get together and celebrate their culture.

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Lobby groups in the UK have warned that the recent restrictions on student visas will leave UK universities with loss of revenue from international students.

Researchers claim that at least £2.4 billion could be lost over a decade, and this drop in funding will negatively affect the whole university system and decrease the quality of education available to home students. Despite the current government views on student visas, it is clear that the UK university ecosystem needs international student minds and cash to survive as it is. Foreign students for their part will get more choice when studying in the UK (this is one of the most commonly stated reasons to come and study in the UK), and they will gain a more widely recognised degree that increases their chance of finding employment the world over.

Are aware that “Students from Nigeria are set to flourish in the UK. This bursary will enable young Nigerians from less well-off backgrounds to get the education of their dreams.”  African Leadership Academy updates- Tunde Folawiyo

The Nigerian student community is already very well established in the UK–there is an organisation that provides social life, community, advice and support to Nigerians studying in the UK. There are also a wealth of websites and message boards where people are swapping advice on how to thrive in the UK as an international student. By 2016 there will be an estimated 30,000 Nigerian student studying in the UK.

The numbers are set to grow fivefold from the current numbers as UK universities court African talent in order to keep them at the top of the international league tables. Interested students can find more information on the Sheffield Hallam website.

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