The Opku + network thanks the Finnish higher education communities for the measures already taken in response to the crisis in Ukraine. Donations from institutions of higher education, and support services for students have displayed the willingness to take social responsibility in the wake of the crisis.
As the war in Ukraine drags on and the situation becomes more complicated, the Finnish higher education communities must also seek to build up the European higher education community during the crisis. In addition to condemning the war, concrete measures are needed to support students and university staff fleeing the war zone.
Opku + student unions’ proposal for measures to be taken by Universities of Applied Sciences:
- Scholars at Risk programs must be begun to offer safe haven to students and university staff fleeing dangerous situations in their home countries.
- Students fleeing the war in Ukraine and other crisis areas must be allowed to study for free in open higher education and, if the crisis continues, be admitted to education leading to a degree.
- The effects of the war must be monitored and financial support must be offered to students from crisis areas such as Ukraine and Russia. This may include reimbursement of any tuition fees for students, especially for ongoing degrees.
Russia’s hostilities in Ukraine are advancing toward a stalemate from which there is no direct way out. The unification of the European higher education communities is an act in defense of education and civilization, which are the key tools in resolving and preventing crises and conflicts.
This resolution has been signed by the following student unions: