Sanctuary Scholarship

Our Sanctuary Scholarship offers opportunities for those with refugee or asylum-seeking status to study at the University of Leicester via distance learning. 

The scholarship provides a full fee waiver.

Applicants can be based anywhere in the world as long as there is regular access to the internet. We welcome applications from those living outside the UK and will determine eligibility on a case by case basis.

If you are interested in applying for this scholarship, please contact our distance learning team in the first instance.


This scholarship is available to students applying for the following courses

The Sanctuary Scholarship recognises that there can be factors that may make it difficult for people from asylum seeking and refugee communities to access university. 

You may have always aspired to study at university but faced obstacles in achieving your goal. We understand that your studies may have been interrupted, that you might not have evidence of your previous qualifications or that your qualifications aren't transferable. You may also need additional English language support.

The Sanctuary Scholarship is designed to accommodate these factors, so don’t let these stop you from applying.

You can apply for the Sanctuary Scholarship if you hold an academic offer to study (or are waiting for a decision) and fall into one of the following status groups:

  • An asylum seeker - a person who has made a claim for refugee status.
  • A person who has been granted Humanitarian Protection (HP) or Limited Leave to Remain (formerly Discretionary Leave to Remain) in the UK.
  • A refugee - a person who has been granted refugee status by the UK Home Office.
  • The dependants of any of the above status groups, in recognition that they are also from asylum seeking or refugee backgrounds, including;
    • family members of an asylum seeker whose claim is dependent on a principal applicant; or
    • family members of a an individual with refugee or Humanitarian Protection (HP) status who have come to the UK on a Family Reunion visa.

Information leaflet for those who have registered, or are considering registering an asylum application in the UK.


In order to apply for the course and the sanctuary scholarship please complete the application form for the relevant course via one of the links above.

Please only complete one application form.


Although the application deadline for courses starting in March 2019 is 25 February, to be eligible for the Sanctuary Scholarship your application must be received by no later than Monday 11 February 2019.

Personal statement

In your personal statement (completed as part of the application form) please include your response to the following questions:

  • Why have you chosen Leicester and your particular course of study?
  • What are your ambitions for the future and how would the Sanctuary Scholarship help you to achieve these ambitions? 

Evidence of qualifications

If you are unable to provide evidence of your previous education or professional experience please use your personal statement to tell us as much about your previous education or work experience as you can. 


Requirement for references varies from course to course. One reference is required for all Politics distance learning courses. Your referees can be academic (tutors, lecturers, mentors) or professional (managers, supervisors, colleagues). References must be written in English. 

If required for your course, please either: 

  • provide contact details for your referees on your application. We will then email them to request your references; or 
  • if you have organised recent, signed and dated references yourself, upload them to your application.

Other useful information

After applying

Once we have received your completed application for your course (with all supporting documents) we will aim to contact you regarding your application within five working days. If we make you an offer, that is for the course, not the scholarship.

Outcomes for the sanctuary scholarship itself will be considered by the scholarships committee in the week commencing Monday 11 February 2019 and communicated to successful applicants in the week commencing Monday 18 February 2019. 

Please note that successful applicants will be awarded a full fee waiver and therefore information on payment will be outlined in the correspondence.