The outcome of the referendum on 23 June, was not, in my opinion, one that is in the best interests of universities or the country. However, the most important message I have for staff and students is that nothing will change immediately.
European Union students who have been made an offer to study at the University of Stirling in 2016 (or 2017 deferred entry) are unaffected. Those who are considering applying to the University for 2017 entry are encouraged to do so in the usual way. We will keep all applicants informed as relevant details emerge.
As I discussed earlier this month, in an article for The Conversation, the University of Stirling is a European University and will remain a European University. Our EU staff and students are part of the fabric of our scholarly community and contribute greatly to, and enrich all aspects of, university life. The value of young people from across Europe living and learning together is immeasurable and we will do everything possible to ensure that this is not diminished in any way.
I recognise that this will be a worrying time for EU colleagues, students and their families. I would like to reassure you, that without unilateral action from the UK Government, the vote to leave will have no immediate impact on your immigration status or on the status of current and prospective EU students and staff. There will also be no immediate impact on the UK as a full member of Horizon 2020 and Erasmus.
The University values all our staff and students from across the EU and indeed from across the world – this will not change.
During the coming months, I will be working with the Scottish and UK Governments and with Universities UK and Universities Scotland to ensure that Stirling’s voice is heard in discussions and negotiations to ensure that the rich cultural diversity, that is the hallmark of higher education in the UK, is not lost.
Professor Gerry McCormac, Principal and Vice-Chancellor