A report conducted by the What Works team into the experiences of the King’s Sanctuary Scholars found that, through their access to higher education being unlocked by the scholarships, the students achieved a deeper sense of self-belief, gained a greater sense of power and autonomy, and experienced improved levels of confidence.
Judith Nantomah, a Sanctuary Scholar who is studying on the Adult Nursing BA programme at King’s, shared how the scholarship alleviated her financial worries, allowing her to focus on her studies and pursue her passion for nursing. ‘Since I received my scholarship, I have been able to go on clinical placements and therefore not worry about being dismissed from my course. Transportation costs were a big issue. Without any other source of funds, I was always thinking of how far the very little I had could go or take me.’
In 2018, the Dr Monica Malik Refugee Bursary was also established at King’s to support postgraduate students from refugee or humanitarian protection backgrounds. Through this bursary, Dr Monica Malik (King’s alumna, Geography, 1992) wants to help refugee students achieve their dreams of obtaining a postgraduate degree and give them hope. Supporting the students through the bursary is also rewarding for Monica, who reflected ‘It has been so meaningful for me to get to know the students that I’ve helped and to hear their stories. It’s very moving to have that connection.’
Delivering blended learning for Syrian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon
The Partnership for Digital Learning and Increased Access (PADILEIA) was formed to meet the educational needs of refugees affected by the Syrian war and disadvantaged local youth in Jordan and Lebanon. Running from 2016 to 2022, this innovative partnership consists of King’s (led by Dr Tania Lima, Director of Global Engagement), Al Al-Bayt University in Jordan, and the American University of Beirut in Lebanon, as well as Kiron Open Higher Education (a digital-education NGO) and FutureLearn (a leader in online learning).
PADILEIA delivered blended foundation, study tracks and short courses, and launched eight bespoke open access courses on FutureLearn that were designed by King’s Online and King’s Faculties. These courses include English for Healthcare, Introduction to Nursing, Business, Entrepreneurship, Digital Skills and Engineering. To date, over 13,000 self-identifying refugees and disadvantaged young people have participated in one of these courses, and more than 1 million learners worldwide have enrolled.
To aid students’ learning and help them prepare for university, study hubs were set up in Jordan in Lebanon where students had access to facilitators, wrap-around support and a sense of community. 510 students followed the PADILEIA foundation programme and 102 graduates have gone on to continue their education and enrol at university.