UEL receives £100k to fund Turing Scheme overseas study

The University of East London (UEL) has campuses in Stratford and Royal Docks. Picture: Google Maps

The University of East London (UEL) has campuses in Stratford and Royal Docks. Picture: Google Maps - Credit: Archant

The University of East London (UEL) has been awarded almost £100,000 so students can experience living and studying around the world.

UEL has scooped £96,500 from the Department for Education (DfE) for the government's Turing Scheme.

Dr Gulnara Stover, director of Talent Gateway at UEL, said: "This grant award is great news.

"It is particularly rewarding that the DfE has supported our commitment to ensure students from under-represented backgrounds will gain opportunities that might otherwise have passed them by."

She added that the future of work will be governed by robots and machines so it follows that empathy, relationship-building and communication will be in demand.

"Few activities assist in re-enforcing these soft skills as much as eye-opening foreign travel," Dr Stover said. 

UEL reports that as part of its bid, it pledged to support students who struggle to gain access to opportunities beyond their home and who may have problems with self-confidence as a result.

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This includes those from ethnic minorities or poorer households as well as those with special educational needs. 

Forty students will take part in the scheme in the academic year 2021-22, with the number doubling the following year.

In total, 40 per cent of students selected will be from under-represented backgrounds, according to UEL. They will study at institutions which are partnered with the university.

UEL expects that by learning soft skills - such as a better understanding of different cultures - students will be better prepared for the jobs of the future.

The Turing Scheme is a successor to Erasmus+, an EU programme to support international education and training. Target countries for the UK scheme include India, Germany, Egypt, Canada and China.

It is named after Alan Turing, the mathematical genius who laid the philosophical and practical groundwork for modern computers in the years following the Second World War. 

The programme is backed by £110million and is expected to fund 35,000 global exchanges from September, including university study, school exchanges and work placements.

According to the DfE, the scheme aims to improve social mobility by targeting students from disadvantaged backgrounds and areas which did not previously have many students benefiting from Erasmus+.