Besides that, buddy programmes in which students supervise refugees and initiatives for social entrepreneurship further improve the integration and participation. All of this increases the network between refugees, students and their direct environment.
The university and the municipality also want to open up these activities to other people from Utrecht, in order to increase the impact of the project. Alderman Diepeveen: “We strive for Utrecht as a city for everyone, where status holders and residents live and learn together. Incluusion lines up with that beautifully.”
In 2016, Utrecht University started this project. This made Utrecht University the first university in the Netherlands where this was possible. In 2017, 199 refugee students of over 30 nationalities enrolled in several courses. Some of them have already gone on to Master’s programmes. Since then, more and more universities have adopted this successful approach.