Two graduating students wearing academic dress stand outside with family members

Philanthropy Report 2021/22

Enabling refugee scholars to pursue their studies


The Refugee Academic Futures programme is providing crucial support to talented students of refugee and asylum seeker status.

Equality, diversity and inclusion are at the heart of Oxford’s academic mission, and in recent years the University has taken great strides to address under-representation within its student body. To maintain this momentum, earlier this year the University launched the Refugee Academic Futures programme, the second strand of a series of new graduate scholarship programmes established under Oxford’s Academic Futures initiative.

Millions of people have been forcibly displaced by war and persecution, yet refugees are significantly under-represented in higher education across the globe. Talented students of refugee and asylum seeker status are confronted with a multitude of barriers to education, often due to disruption and socio- economic deprivation. As a world-class institution and with a rich history of supporting academics and students seeking asylum, the University of Oxford is well placed to improve this situation.

Following an appeal this summer, almost £20,000 was raised from over 60 donors towards the Refugee Academic Futures programme. This will support the cost of providing full scholarships to students on either a one-year full-time or two-year part-time master’s course in any subject area at Oxford. Scholars will also be given opportunities to receive mentoring and a bespoke programme of pre-arrival and on-course support.

Lam Joar, a refugee who received a Dulverton Scholarship to study for an MSc in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies at St Anne’s College, said: ‘Education is the one component of empowerment that has the potential to transform the lives of the underprivileged in our societies.’

Support refugee scholars at Oxford