The European Students' Union monthly newsletter 
Issue: Refugees Issue 2015

Dear readers,

As you all know, Europe is facing one of the biggest humanitarian crisis since the World War II regarding the number of displaced persons fleeing their countries and looking for a safe place to stay in Europe. Some of these people will be able to get the refugee status and initiate the integration path rather fast, while others might face quite long and bureaucratic procedures. In either case, education institutions and stakeholders have a key role to play both in welcoming and integrating these people. 
The European Students' Union is aware of the challenges that refugees and other displaced persons face, especially the challenges in accessing or continuing education and getting their qualifications recognised. This is why ESU has been collaborating with other organisations and institutions since a long time ago, to assist refugees and displaced persons, including those who are in the area at the border between Turkey and Syria. Nonetheless, much more needs to be done to meet the needs of refugees and combat hate-speech, xenophobia and radicalisation.

We hope you will find this special edition of our newsletter interesting and inspiring. We would also like to invite you to share initiatives and good practices about how to assist refugees and other displaced persons. ESU will continue working on ensuring that education is seen as a human right and a public good, accessible to everyone regardless of their formal status.

Fernando Galán, ESU Chairperson
ESU News
The European Students' Union condemns the terrorist attacks in Paris
ESU is deeply concerned about the the possible outcome of what this seed of fear might mean for Europeans and for Europe itself.
The European Students' Union strongly condemns the terrorist attacks in Paris and send our condolences and solidarity with all the victims, their families and their beloved ones. All our thoughts and prayers are with all people in Paris and in France. 
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Students worldwide stand up for free education as a tool against radicalisation and xenophobia
BRUSSELS - Today, in celebration of the International Students' Day, the European Students Union (ESU) together with Organising Bureau of European School Student Unions (OBESSU) and students from all over the globe call for freedom of movement, freedom to study and freedom to live in dignity.
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Step forward to make EU education systems more accessible to non-EU students
On 17th of November, the International Students' Day, the trialogue between the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council have reached an agreement regarding new EU rules of entry and residence for non-EU students. This directive will merge and replace two existing directives (one on students and one on researchers) and has been a subject of discussions and disagreements for the past years.
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Conversations with a Syrian refugee: Meet Karam Yahya
We reached Karam Yahya, a young Syrian refugee who not very long ago made the dangerous jouney to Europe in search for a better life. Karam was also one of our key speakers during the 30th European Students' Convention in Brussels. We tried to find out more about his story, including his motivations to join Europe and his hopes and fears.
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Why education is a life-saving sector for refugees
GAZIANTEP - Since the so called refugee migration crisis hitting Europe in the summer of 2015, there are numbers we are starting to know by heart. In 2015, the UNHCR has registered over 4 million Syrian refugees: 2,1 Syrian refugees live in Turkey, over one million live in Lebanon, over one million live in Jordan and Greece registered over 500 000 refugees. Out of the Syrian population that is still living in Syria, 13,5 are in dire need of basic services: food, non-food items, health, education, shelter, water, hygiene and sanitation. 6,5 in Syria are Internally Displaced Persons. Numbers are devastating, yet for the most of us, they don't mean anything until we meet a Syrian person and we can give a human face to these numbers. Hopefully with the majority of those refugees being young people, our generation will be able to meet them in schools, universities or in the workplace and welcome them without fear and with compassion. If we often need to put a human face on Syrian refugees, we must show them our human face as well by being compassionate, this is what makes us Human. But before we meet refugees in schools, universities and in the workplace, there are many steps that need to be taken by our European governments.
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The refugee crisis as Europe's brain gain
Europe is in need of a new university: a Lampedusa university. There are many talented people among the 19 million people that have been forced to flee their home countries because of war, persecution and oppression. Nurses, architects and researchers that can help Europe in facing the challenges of the future.

Half of all Syrian refugees are children or teenagers and only 20% of them are attending school. While education is exactly what is essential/necessary to give them a future, hope and perspectives. Why not transform refugee camps into centres of excellence? we would thereby help to reshape the future of those teenagers and give their lives some perspective again.
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Members' News
SSU: How does Slovenia react to the refugees crisis?
Slovenians' opinions are divided on many issues; due to geographical or political reasons. This means that the country has many opposing thoughts on the topic of refugees. On one hand, there are the ones who believe that refugees are going to enrich our society, that our country should put in some efforts to keep (some of) the refugees in our country and that people are coming from warzones, where their lives are endangered and to flee is the only possible and reasonable way to survive.
NUSUK: International Students' Campaign Day of Solidarity
The anti-immigrant policies of the UK government have become intolerable. The difficulties faced by International students are not isolated but are part of a wider agenda to keep away migrants and pander to the far-right. Students across the UK have had enough and are going to take part in a one-day national day of walk-out on November 17 to highlight their dissatisfaction and anger with such policies.
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VSS-UNES-USU: Refugees in Swiss universities (French) 
The Swiss Students Union welcomes the swissuniversities declaration of intent of 09.17.2015 to become active in the field of the admission of refugees in Swiss schools. In this area , there is a need for action. In addition to admission, we should also eliminate other barriers that prevent refugees to continue their training.
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SFS: Four proposals for an open knowledge society (Swedish)
Swedish National Union of Students (SFS) has stood up for transparency and solidarity in a hundred years.Today, on the International Student Day, we want to highlight all people to get an education and move freely in the world. We present four requirements for an open knowledge society.
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ESU in the Press

Upcoming Events

1-5 December 2015: Board Meeting 69 and Board Meeting Seminar
 9-12 March 2016: European Students' Convention 31

Current ESU Projects 
Below is a list of projects ESU is participating in as a Partner or Team Leader. 

Measuring and Comparing Achievements of Learning Outcomes in Higher Education in Europe (CALOHEE)

Enhancing Quality through Innovative Policy & Practice (EQUIP)
European Forum for Enhanced Collaboration in Teaching (EFFECT)