The UK has for the first time become a host nation for an Argentinian government scholarship scheme.
The BEC.AR Argentine Presidential Fellowship in Science and Technology was set up in 2012. It now gives about 100-150 students a year the chance to pursue master’s degrees in science, technology, engineering and maths subjects. Funding covers tuition fees, travel expenses, maintenance, health insurance and visa costs. Host countries include Australia, Brazil, Chile, France, South Korea, Spain and the US.
As a powerful indicator of the desire for better relations between the two nations following the election of President Mauricio Macri in December 2015, the Argentinian government approached Universities UK with a view to putting the UK on the list of host countries.
A contract has now been signed between the Ministry of Modernisation of the Argentine Republic and Universities UK International, which will be responsible for administering the scheme in the UK.
Students with excellent levels of proficiency in English who want to take up places in September 2017 can apply to BEC.AR until January. It is expected that about 20 full scholarships to Britain will be awarded, and that the master’s programme will later be extended to fund short-term PhD mobility for doctoral students.
“The international nature of our academic communities is a defining feature of the UK university sector,” says Vivienne Stern, director of UUKi.
“Seeing our two countries choose higher education as one of the first positive steps to strengthen ties is a real statement of the value that higher education plays in international relations.”