Digital access to higher education: iversity supports refugees with Kiron University
Berlin, 29.9.2015 - iversity and Kiron University have closed a partnership to provide refugees with immediate access to higher education without bureaucratic hurdles. Both parties think that access to higher education is the key to integration.
Many of the refugees coming to Europe at the moment cannot continue their academic education. The lack of legal documents, insufficient language proficiency or simply the limited places available for foreign students in German universities, are among major factors that cost time and hinder refugees from resuming their studies. Because of these barriers in Germany alone, over 100,000 people are unable to tap into their academic potential.
To tackle this problem, Kiron University will enable refugees to complete their first two years of university studies online. Afterwards they can continue their academic education at a partner university, i.e. RWTH Aachen or Hochschule Heilbronn, and receive an accredited degree.
iversity has partnered up with Kiron University to make this possible. Since 2013, iversity has been offering online courses in cooperation with renowned universities throughout Europe, including RWTH Aachen. iversity has developed a considerable course pool, which can be used to offer a decentralised, inexpensive access to higher education. “We are happy that the digital infrastructure we have built can contribute to helping refugees in a fast and unbureaucratic way,” explains Hannes Klöpper, co-founder and CEO of iversity, on the motivation behind this new cooperation.
On the iversity.org platform, mainly European universities and teachers offer courses at an academic level and in digital formats. Currently, learners can choose between dozens of online courses from a wide range of subjects on iversity.org. With nearly a million course enrolments, iversity is one of the most important suppliers of online courses in Europe. https://www.iversity.org
About Kiron University
The non-profit organisation Kiron University was founded by Markus Kreßler and Vincent Zimmer in Berlin. It is currently being funded by the Social Impact Lab. Kiron has the mission to provide refugees with access to academic education. This is supposed to give refugees new perspectives on the job market and help with their integration into the host country. The study programmes are free, on a world-class level and can be started before the asylum procedure. Right now Kiron is running the biggest crowdfunding campaign in Germany thus far, in order to finance scholarships for refugees. People can still contribute donations until November 5th.