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GSM London loses licence to recruit non-EU students

GSM London, formerly known as Greenwich School of Management, has lost its licence to sponsor non-EU international students.

GSM London's Greenford campus.

GSM said fewer than 100 students are currently studying on Tier 4 visas at the college

UK Visas and Immigration revoked GSM London’s Tier 4 licence this month because it exceeded its visa refusal threshold, the college has said.

In a statement, GSM said it was notified by UKVI that its licence had been revoked after it exceeded the visa refusal limit by five students, despite meeting the requirements on the other two mandatory compliance metrics: enrolment rates and course rates.

“We are actively engaging with our Tier 4 students including a series of group briefings and one to one meetings”

“GSM London scored 100% and 99%, respectively, on these measures, putting us significantly above compliance thresholds,” president and CEO Alison Wheaton said.

GSM said fewer than 100 students are currently studying on Tier 4 visas at the college.

The college, which issues accountancy, finance, business, management and law degrees validated by Plymouth University, said it has informed all staff and students about the revocation.

“We are actively engaging with our Tier 4 students including a series of group briefings and one to one meetings,” said Wheaton. “We are also working with Plymouth University, our validating partner, to identify alternative study options for any students who might be unable to complete their course at GSM London.”

The college is a member of higher education representative body, Guild HE. Chief executive, Gordon McKenzie, said the organisation is disappointed that having five students over the visa threshold resulted in the loss of GSM London’s licence.

“These rules have a disproportionate and unfair impact on smaller institutions, including some of the newer and more innovative HE providers the government wants to encourage,” he said.

GSM was founded in 1973 and has over 1,500 students at its campuses in Greenwich and Greenford. In 2011, it was bought by private equity firm Sovereign Capital.

When asked for comment, The Home Office said it is unable to discuss individual cases.

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