Published on October 22, 2012 | by Morgana Edwards

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Some London Met students escape deportation

View of the London Metropolitan University

Orion building of the London Metropolitan University [Wojtek Gurak]

London Metropolitan University’s overseas students have been granted permission to continue their studies, providing they have proper immigration status.

The University have been awarded a judicial review, after the UK Border Agency (UKBA) revoked their visa licence to sponsor overseas students in August.

However the LMU is not allowed to recruit non-EU students at present.

Professor Malcolm Gillies, the vice-chancellor of LMU, argued the row over student visas had cast a great shadow over the British higher education system.

Detrimental 

Speaking to the London Evening Standard Gillies said: “The story, particularly of the deportation of thousands of students, is one that went right round the world.

“Now they are not being deported and have other options, the situation starts to settle down but unfortunately not in the minds of the rest of the world.”

He went on to suggest that new government caps on immigration should not include students, as this is detrimental to both the students and the UK economy.

The latest statement released by the university said: “On September 21 the university gained approval to hold a judicial review.

“The parties also reached an agreement to enable most international students with appropriate visa status to remain with us, or to transfer elsewhere.”

Fifteen per cent of current London Metropolitan students come from overseas.

UK Border Agency

“Revoking the University’s licence was the right course of action and we will continue to fight their challenge at the full hearing.”

The UKBA’s decision to remove London Metropolitan’s license was a result of the universities failure to “address serious and systematic failings.” The University denied these statements.

Up to 2,600 Affected

UKBA commented further on their decision to revoke the universities license saying: “London Metropolitan University’s Tier four sponsor licence remains revoked.

London Metropolitan has failed to get its sponsor status restored and the judge has not granted interim relief.

“UKBA agreed to allow existing genuine students to continue studying at the University until their course has ended or the end of the academic year, whichever is sooner – as long as they meet the right standards.

“But students who are here illegally and do not meet our immigration criteria will not be allowed to stay.

“Revoking the University’s licence was the right course of action and we will continue to fight their challenge at the full hearing.”

Many students were affected by the decision – it was reported that up to 2,600 felt the results of the verdict.

The university has also lost out financially with up £30 million of its income being slashed by the move.

During this stringent economic climate it appears this announcement has left both students and the university under greater pressure than they already faced through spending cuts and fee hikes.

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