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UK toasts first term of Science without Borders

The Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP and the Rt Hon David Willetts MP were among guests at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in London this week to mark the achievements of Science without Borders UK (SwB UK); the Brazilian-government back scholarship programme that will see up to 10,000 Brazilians arrive in the country.

L-R: The Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP; the Rt Hon David Willetts MP; and SwB UK student  Rodrigo Amarante Colpo, studying Computer Sciences and Physics at Swansea University

Opportunities for future intakes will be boosted with the provision of fully funded pre-sessional English courses

Science without Borders aims to send 101,000 Brazilian students on undergraduate sandwich courses, PhD sandwich courses and full PhDs to study science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) and creative industries courses at top universities across the world.

In the UK the programme is run by the UK HE International Unit on behalf of Universities UK, and it has enjoyed considerable success since its launch this year with over 500 undergraduates placed at 71 UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in September 2012.

A further 150 applications for PhD and post-docs have been received. SwB UK has also offered places to over 550 additional undergraduate students who are due to start courses in January 2013.

Opportunities for future intakes will be boosted with the provision of fully funded pre-sessional English courses that will be offered as part of the programme from 2013.

Brazilians already in the UK attended the bash, which featured caipirinhas alongside Brazilian specialities such as pao de queijo and the standard British festive offering, the mince pie.

The bash featured caipirinhas, pao de queijo and the standard British festive offering, the mince pie

The success of the programme has been further lifted by the announcement this year of support from BG Group. The BG Group is now working with the  International Unit  to develop a strategy for business engagement across a number of industry sectors to support SwB UK with placements and sponsorship for undergraduates, PhD sandwich students and full-time PhDs.

Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Swire said: “The UK is committed to strengthening our ties with Brazil.  The two countries already have long-established relationships and collaborations in higher education, science and research and this programme builds on this while at the same time forging new links with business and industry.”

Willetts added, “These agreements bring opportunities for our leading scientists, universities and businesses to collaborate and learn from one another, driving up knowledge and skills in both our countries.”

 

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