23 January 2018

Study opportunities for refugees

Collaboration Utrecht University and municipality of Utrecht improves integration of refugees

Today, Utrecht University President Anton Pijpers and Alderman Kees Diepeveen sign a collaboration agreement. The goal: to improve the integration of refugees in Utrecht.

With this, the municipality of Utrecht joins Incluusion. Through this programme, refugees can enrol in university courses free of charge. They don't just gain theoretical knowledge, they also internalise typically Dutch study skills. It is a gateway to a full education, internship or work.

Doorgeven 2018: Geef om vluchtelingstudenten
Student following education via Incluusion.

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.