Pilot to prepare refugees for higher education
During the next academic year, Radboud University will start a two-year pilot to prepare refugees for a programme in higher education. The prospective students will be given such courses as Dutch, English and academic skills.
There is room for 15 to 18 legally recognised refugees in the preparatory year to be created. The prospective students will meet in one group and will have a location on the campus. They will be trained for the State Exam Programme ll (language level B1), the national language exam for foreign-language-speaking adults who are learning Dutch as a second language. This diploma shows that their command of Dutch is sufficient to be able to study and work.
In this transition year, other subjects offered will include academic skills, English and perhaps maths. In addition, the refugees will also become acquainted with the study of their choice by taking one or more subjects. And during their course of studies – after this preparatory year – students will also be given extra supervision. WerkBedrijf Rijk van Nijmegen and UAF (Foundation for Refugee Students) will help them to build a network and to approach the job market.
The reason for the pilot was a suggestion made by the Werkgroep Vluchtelingen, created when Syrian refugees in particular arrived at Heumensoord in 2015. The preparatory year will be financed by UAF, Radboud University and DUO.
Other institutes of higher education, such as HAN University of Applied Sciences, have been offering such a transition year (or a shorter period) for a longer time.