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London Met Loses More than Half its International Students

The true extent of the damage done to London Metropolitan University's international student community over the last few months has been revealed. After the students were told in August that they would not be allowed to study at the university, that decision was then overturned, though more than 55% of the international students have still ended up leaving London Met.

This is just the latest in a string of headlines about London Met's international students over the last few months. The problems started when the UK Border Agency revoked the university's visa licence, meaning that with just a matter of weeks before the start of a new academic year, thousands of non-EU students were left stranded. However, after winning the right to appeal the decision, the university was given a temporary reprieve and its students were given the option to study at the institution until the end the current academic year.

Despite this change of decision, of the 1,385 students who were given the option of staying at the university, only 620 chose to do so. The reasons for this low uptake are numerous.

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London Met’s International Students Allowed to Study…For Now

Friday saw the latest twist in the saga surrounding London Metropolitan University's international students, as the High Court ruled that its students with full immigration status can continue their studies at the institution.

Less than a month ago, the UK Border Agency stripped the university of its right to act as a visa sponsor for non-EU students. This not only meant that London Met could no longer recruit new international students, but also that the existing students (around 2,000 of them) due to return to their studies this week had to find a different institution.

However, after the university strongly denied any wrongdoing and outcry from prominent figures in British higher education, the High Court has given permission to London Met to challenge the decision. It also ruled that whilst the process of appeal was taking place, new and existing international students who had already been granted visas could begin the new academic year at the university.

The Interests of the Students

At the hearing, London Met's lawyer Richard Gordon argued that it "came down to fairness" and that the UKBA's decision was unlawful. Whilst not totally convinced by this, the judge did rule that the university could make a legal challenge through a judicial review.

A statement from UKBA followed, explaining:

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Questions Foreign Students Have Always Wanted To Ask

Yesterday we brought you the first in a series exploring the things that international students find strange about the UK. From the food, to the politicians, to the pedestrian crossings, there was plenty of British weirdness on show.

Well, you lucky people haven't had to wait long for part two of this series- in fact, here it is now! Today, we're looking at all those questions that foreign students have about Britain and British students, but have never dared ask.

As with yesterday, the students we spoke to come from around the world but have all studied at both American colleges and British universities. Thanks again go to Tessa who led the discussions, as she came up with some real gems.

And here is where you can get involved. Below is a list of all the questions our students came up with. We want you to vote for your favourite ones (or even come up with your own) over the next few weeks. We'll then answer the most popular questions. Comment below the article with your favourites or let us know on our Facebook page

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What Do International Students Find Strange About Britain?

With many of you arriving in the UK for the first time in the next few weeks, you'll probably be wondering quite what to expect. Inevitably there are going to be things you find strange and unusual about Britain that are completely different to your home country.

To help you realise you're not alone we have a series of blog posts from the perspective of international students who have already spent time in Britain. We will be taking a light-hearted look at what they find weird about Britain, the British and their fellow students.

To start us off, creator of IntProblems.com, and ForeignStudents.com regular Tessa, spoke to a group of students. All the students have experienced both American colleges and British universities so are in the perfect position to answer the question:

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Latest Protest Against London Met Decision

The latest protest against the decision to revoke London Metropolitan University's license to teach international students took place yesterday outside the Home Office and Downing Street. Around 200 student and staff from the university joined together, with the foreign students who must now transfer universities or face deportation leading the demonstration.

This is only a latest in a number of protests and outspoken statements from various well-known figures against the UK Border Agency's decision to remove London Met's status as a ‘highly trusted sponsor' for non-EU students. The decision made less than a month before the start of the new academic year left thousands of students stranded.

In an attempt to minimise the damage, a number of the largest higher education organisations in the UK met yesterday to try and work out the best way forwards for the students left stranded by the decision. They hope to be able to offer every one of the international students who have been left without a place at London Met, place at a different university instead. A clearing system is expected to be announced shortly.

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