Current international students studying in the UK during COVID-19 are sharing their experiences through video across a new Instagram campaign, #WeAreTogether.
‘Initially, I thought it would be difficult to cope, but Solent University has been absolutely helpful providing online resources and mental health tools’, said Sejal, sharing her experience of studying at a UK university during COVID-19.
‘I would like to say stay positive as we are together in this situation’, said Jaspreet, who 4,000 miles from his hometown in Punjab, took time to share tips with other international students for staying mentally healthy during COVID-19.
The UK higher education sector is truly coming together in the fight against Covid-19. Universities are supporting their international students, such as Sejal. Students are supporting each other, such as Jaspreet. There are even students supporting their local community, such as Songze, a student at the University of East Anglia, handing out face masks to older people in the community. This is all highlighted through the #WeAreTogether campaign.
Created and led by Universities UK International, it’s a campaign by the UK higher education sector, for the UK higher education sector. It has a focus on harnessing authentic, real and unfiltered student voices to reassure those international applicants about whether to continue with their plans to study in the UK this autumn.
A campaign Instagram channel has recently been launched, @WeAreTogether_UK, which features videos of current international students studying in the UK, from all over the world, talking about their experiences during Covid-19.
The UK higher education community is a strong, supportive one and UK universities are doing all they can to ensure their students are safe.
‘The university has helped us a lot during this tough time. All of the teaching and resources have been moved online and I can still access the IT resources and the library from home which is super helpful for me to study at home and keep a very safe social distance from people’, said Ziwei, an international student studying at the University of Glasgow.
Staying safe will see UK universities taking a blended approach to learning this autumn. This means face-to-face and on campus where possible, and high-quality online teaching and learning otherwise to ensure the safety of students and staff.
‘The experience has been incredible’, said Winter, an international student talking about the online learning being provided to her during COVID-19 by her university. ‘You feel like you are in class, it’s engaging, we can ask questions, we can see our teachers’.
Universities Minister, Michelle Donelan, recently said: “International students are an integral part of our society, culture and economy and we are proud that so many international students come here every year to study. That is why I want to stress to overseas students at this unprecedented time that they will always be welcome in this country.” The #WeAreTogether campaign is powerful because it is those international students Michelle Donelan is speaking about, telling us all about their experience studying in the UK during COVID-19.
UK universities are open, we are looking forward to welcoming international students this autumn, and #WeAreTogether.
Andrew is Assistant Director, External Affairs at Universities UK International