Taste of University – programme for refugees


Bayswater Foundation is delighted to deliver a two-week programme this summer for refugees at the University of Nottingham. The programme aims to empower both teenagers and adults through English and break down the barriers faced when trying to access higher education.

Aim of the programme: to empower both teenagers and adults through English and break down the barriers faced when trying to access higher education and finding paid employment. Two-week residential and day course at Nottingham university campus.

Programme includes:

ESOL / Academic English, insight into business, UK education system, information on qualifications and translating qualifications, career information, volunteering, Tai Chi, psychology, wellbeing and resilience, Widening Participation and studying at university, soft skills, innovation, a talk from a refugee currently studying at university, insights into construction and science, games and activities.

Why did the students choose this programme?

  • to improve their English and gain confidence communicating
  • to experience a UK university and gain information about studying
  • to make friends and be in a supportive environment
  • to prepare for entering job market & developing careers

What are the students saying?

Rakhim from Chechnya

“I joined this programme as it was a chance to break down barriers and meet new people. I avoid meeting new people because of the language barrier so I wanted to improve my English. Also, I have got useful information about how to apply for a job, write a cover letter and other useful workshops. I would recommend this programme to others – especially for people who are lost or depressed. The biggest problem for refugees is loneliness. It’s good to get out of your comfort zone – even if our comfort zone isn’t very comfortable!”

Farbod from Iran

“I live with my parents but they don’t speak English so I need to translate for them. I’d like to study in Derby College but they need a level 2 English qualification, which I don’t have. I learnt English on my own, with movies like Sherlock Holmes and Downton Abbey. I want to study English and Computer Engineering and then work for a year before university. I would recommend this programme to others because there are the best teachers, activities, staff… I hope to volunteer on this programme in the future.”

Future programmes

We are looking to run this programme again next year and will be looking for sponsorship and support. Please contact Jessica Dunks foundation@bayswater.ac for more information

About Refugees

Students on the programme are all refugees. Less than a quarter of 1% (0.25%) of people in the UK are refugees (Refugee Action)

Find out more about Bayswater here