Demanding an appropriate reduction of tuition fees for Non-EU students due to COVID-19

Demanding an appropriate reduction of tuition fees for Non-EU students due to COVID-19

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Ahmet Donmez started this petition to TU Delft and

Non-EU international students studying in TU Delft request the TU Delft Education and Student Affairs, the Dutch Government, and the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science to provide a fairer solution regarding the refunding of Non-EU tuition fees for this academic year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although a refund of 1084 euros is being offered to both EU and Non-EU students, we believe that this is unfair for the Non-EU students who are paying roughly 7 times more the tuition fee. As a result, compared to EU students for which the offered solution amounts to a whopping 50% reduction of their tuition fees, the same solution for Non-EU international students amounts to a meagre 6% reduction of their tuition fees. The rest of this document will highlight the concrete reasons to posit our petition and request.

Since the beginning of 2020, Covid-19 has spread all over the world, including the Netherlands. As of March 11, 2020, it has been declared a "pandemic" by the World Health Organization, affecting the whole world. Due to the pandemic, educational institutions all over the world, including TU Delft, have switched to long-distance/online learning systems since the beginning of 2020. Developments indicate that this situation will continue until the end of the 2020-2021 academic year.

As international students coming from various countries (including Non-EU countries) to study at TU Delft, we are proud of being educated in one of the most prestigious universities in the world. However, with this understanding in mind, we are currently in a position in which we cannot have full-time campus education due to the pandemic. Consequently, our education is progressing with an extremely limited amount of interaction and low usage of university resources, while having paid the tuition fees in full, which is calculated on the basis of full-time on-campus education. 

Furthermore, we are limited from accessing any training facilities such as laboratories, libraries, lecture and sports halls and are forced to continue our education in an extremely limited social environment. Considering the savings incurred by TU Delft due to low resource usage but expenses incurred due to low student enrollment in the past year, some international students also feel that they are basically funding the overall tuition discount that all students( both EU and Non-EU) are getting. Therefore, a discount of approximately 6% on Non-EU tuition fees does not seem appropriate to the quality of education being imparted as well as even an ethical solution.

Taking everything into consideration, we are fully aware that neither the rapidly changing developments resulting in the lock-down nor immediately overcoming the impacts of the pandemic is in the hands of the TU Delft Management. However, we strongly believe TU Delft Education and Student Affairs, the Dutch Government, and the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science will reconsider and tackle this issue with a fairer approach for Non-EU international students.

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