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Aiming Higher: Prioritizing Higher Education within the Global Movement for Refugee Education

The global movement for refugee education is gaining momentum. Spurred in part by the Syrian crisis, prominent actors from Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai to United Nations Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown are centering refugee education within the broader movements for universal primary and secondary education and comprehensive emergency response. Almost entirely missing from the conversation, however, is a call and associated actions to support higher education in crisis contexts.

Refugee students get a leg up at the University of Utah

The IIE estimates more than 200,000 university-aged students in Syria have had their higher education experiences disrupted by war. IIE President and CEO Allan Goodman calls the Syria conflict’s impact on these students unprecedented. And worldwide, the numbers are stark. According to Goodman, only 1% of the world’s 60 million refugees attend a university, compared to a global average enrollment in post-secondary education of 34%. Read more.

Knox Welcomes Students from Syria

Thousands of miles from their home country of Syria, Farid Freyha and Shahim Shaar are settling into their new lives as Knox College students. They are the first students admitted to Knox through an Institute of International Education (IIE) initiative—the Syria Consortium for Higher Education in Crisis—designed to help Syrian students pursue higher education in the United States. Read more.

Student organization aims to support Syrian students

More than half of all attacks on schools around the world from 2011 to 2015 happened in Syria, according to Save the Children, an international non-governmental organization. Shiyam Galyon said this number is the reason she, along with other Syrian student activists, started the Books Not Bombs campaign, an initiative to push United States universities to offer scholarships to Syrian students and to join the IIE Syria Consortium for Higher Education in Crisis. Read more.

1.75 Million Children Are Missing School in Syria — But This Woman Wants to Fix That

As numerous reports attest to — the refugee crisis is likely the worst humanitarian crisis of our time. The news is rife with images of people fleeing conflict in water-logged rafts, overcrowded into camps, and waiting at border lines. Yet what has been greatly under-reported is the devastating impact mass displacement has had on the very real threat to the future stability of the world: the education crisis. Read more.