In last December, the British government, led by Boris Johnson, announced that it was abandoning the Erasmus exchange program. This has been replaced by the Alan Turing program, in place since March 12. However, the controversy swells: less generous with British students who will go to study abroad, it also does not provide any help for European students enrolled in a British university.
“The new Erasmus program will not cover tuition, travel or living expenses,” explains the daily. The Independent, after the publication by the Ministry of Education of a guide for universities. The British Prime Minister had however predicted a “leveling to the top” thanks to this program endowed with more than 100 million pounds, the equivalent of more than 120 million euros.
Numerous British media have taken up the matter, in particular The Herald, in Glasgow. According to Max Fras, a researcher at the London School of Economics, interviewed by the daily, “the support of living expenses will be significantly lower with the Alan Turing program: 490 pounds [570 euros] against 630 pounds [736 euros] with Erasmus. In addition, tuition fees will not be covered while with Erasmus the courses are free. The researcher also mentions aid for travel costs, now reserved for students from disadvantaged backgrounds.
An ambitious project, but insufficient funds
Reservations had already been expressed about the Alan Turing program. The Independent explains that “the ministers had not been able to explain how a program costing only £ 100 million was going to finance the stays abroad of 35,000 students – for a total budget of £ 2,850 [3 300 euros] per participant ”, during a presentation. This will hurt students on both sides of the Channel, as will the UK economy. According to calculations made in 2020, European students at UK universities brought in no less than £ 243million per year.