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Palestine Solidarity Initiative Announces UK Expansion

Palestine Solidarity Initiative | 04.10.2009 01:47 | Anti-racism | Education | Palestine | World

The Palestine Solidarity Initiative (PSI) has announced that as a result of its success last year it is expanding to encourage and support applications from Palestinians to any Masters degree programme in the UK.

The PSI is a network launched last year by several alumni of the London School of Economics. PSI provides a mechanism for students and alumni to support Palestinians by facilitating their application to the vast array of Masters degree programmes on offer in the UK. This is achieved by pairing individual students familiar with the UK application process with Palestinian applicants, seeking to achieve successful offers for courses and scholarships.

PSI’s pilot year for applicants for the 2009-20010 academic year saw 100 UK volunteers encourage and advise over 40 Palestinian applicants. Many of these applicants received offers and several successfully received scholarships through university-affiliated funding.

As a result of this success and through increased publicity, more Palestinian applications are channelling through the PSI website ( than ever before, and are already being paired with mentors familiar with the UK university system.

The university occupations that followed the Gaza aggression in Winter 2008/09 were successful in winning promises of increased scholarships for Palestinians amongst other concessions. The London School of Economics even agreed to waive the £35 application fee for postgraduate applicants living under Israeli Occupation.

PSI seeks to assist even more Palestinians to successfully apply to scholarships and those available generally to all postgraduate students in the UK by encouraging Palestinians to apply as soon as possible.

Co-founder and former LSE Governor, James Caspell, stated, “It is vital that we encourage and support Palestinian applicants to apply to UK Masters’ courses as soon as possible to maximise their chance of receiving financial support. The main obstacle to equality of opportunity with regards to Palestinians studying abroad is funding, and we will continues to support those campus campaigns that serve to address this issue”

Ayman, a successful Palestinian applicant who lives under Israeli Occupation added, “I always had the idea that applying to a university abroad [would be a] barrier. Thanks to my friends in PSI, who where there for me each step of the way, I learned how to apply to university. Thanks to them, I acquired 3 acceptances from universities in the UK.”

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