Almost 400 people received a scholarship as part of the initiative "Solidarity with Belarus - students", organized by the National Agency for Academic Exchange. Over PLN 5 million has been allocated for this purpose this year.
Out of 395 people who will receive support, 271 are citizens of Belarus starting first, second-cycle or long-cycle studies and 124 are continuing their education in Poland. Every one of them is the scholarship holder under last year's NAWA initiative "Solidarity with students". It was a part of the actions under the "Solidarity with Belarus" movement, which was prepared by NAWA at the request of the then Ministry of Science and Higher Education (currently the Ministry of Education and Science). As in the previous year, the "Solidarity with Belarus - students" movement was very popular, which is best evidenced by the number of applications - as many as 1,821 were received.
Last year, we started helping with online Polish language courses for young people from Belarus, which were very widespread. We ended it with scholarships for students, scientists and teachers. Now, we have observed the need to support students from Belarus, so we decided to continue the initiative in the form of action, in which a group of the best students from last year's scholarship holders and those who only started their studies this year and did not take advantage of such an opportunity before will be able to earn a scholarship - explains Dr Grażyna Żebrowska, director of the Polish National Agency for Academic Exchange.
This year's scholarship holders study at 62 public and private universities supervised by the Ministry of Education and Science. Most people studied at the University of Adam Mickiewicz in Poznań, the Jagiellonian University, the University of Warsaw, the University of Łódź and the Warsaw School of Economics. The fields of study most often chosen by Belarusian scholarship recipients are management, IT, philology, biotechnology and journalism.
The amount of scholarships depends on the study cycle and is either PLN 1,250 (students of first-cycle and long-cycle studies) or PLN 1,500 (students of second-cycle studies). People from Belarus constitute the second largest - after Ukrainians - a group of foreign students at Polish universities.
In the academic year 2014/2015 there were about 4.2 thousand of them, and in 2020/2021 it was more than twice as many - 9.7 thousand. It is an increase compared to the previous academic year by 1.3 thousand. This interest is visible every year during recruitment for universities.