London Metropolitan University (LMU) in UK has offered to refund the course fees already paid by international students, after losing its licence to sponsor international students.
On Wednesday, the UK Border Agency had revoked the licence following which thousands of international students, including around 350 Indians, will no longer be able to continue at the university. These students will now have to find seats in another university within 60 days.
In a letter outlining the latest turn of events, the LMU has tried to reach out to students explaining the situation and has also set up a helpline to deal with queries.
“We are writing to advise you that the UK Border Agency has revoked our licence to recruit non-EU students on Tier 4 student visas with immediate effect. It is with regret, therefore, that we are formally withdrawing your offer of a place at London Met for September 2012,” said the letter signed by the university’s vice chancellor Malcolm Gillies. “If you would like to request a refund of any pre-paid tuition fees, please send an email so we can transfer your pre-paid fees or deposit.”
The letter also said that students could choose to defer their offer to next year, even though it is not certain that the university will recover its licence by then.
Meanwhile, an Indian member of the National Union of Students in the UK wrote to human resources development minister Kapil Sibal on Thursday asking the Indian government to put pressure on the UK government to help resolve the issue.
The student community has rallied behind the affected students, holding demonstrations and circulating online petitions.
“Mood is downbeat but people want to fight the decision,” said Daniel Cooper, University of London Union (ULU) vice-president, via email. The ULU has condemned the UKBA’s action and has called on the government to reinstate the university’s sponsor status.