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Leiden University College to receive funding for diversity project

The Minister of Education, Culture, and Science Ingrid van Engelshoven revealed on Thursday 13 June 2019 which projects will receive funding from the Students-4-Students Campaign. She made the announcement at Pulchri Studio in The Hague. Leiden University College The Hague was one of the seven educational institutes whose proposal was selected. They will become part of the second round in the campaign for more diversity in the classroom.


Last summer, the first round of projects attempting live up to their promise were announced. A total of 4 million euros was made available for the Students-4-Students (S4S), from which 1.3 million still remained. The aim of S4S projects is to inspire and support higher educational institutions in developing renewed project proposals that contribute to the accessibility and equal opportunities for all current and future students and to make higher education more inclusive. In 2018, 20 innovative and sustainable initiatives aimed at students and run by students were selected to take part in the first round. The campaign was executed by ECHOexpertise centre for diversity policies at the request of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science.

‘From International to Diverse’

The aim of the Project ‘From International to Diverse’, under the supervision of  Prof. Dr. Judi Mesmandean of Leiden University College: The Hague (LUC) is twofold:

Improving the connection between LUC’s recruiting resources on one hand and the need for information of the target audiences that LUC currently has difficulty in reaching on the other hand. LUC hopes to realise this by forming close alliances with schools with a variety of cultural and ideological profiles in the area. Apart from that, the project proposal also focusses on further developing, implementing and expanding the current community programme: Global Citizenship, which has a structured approach to diversity, inclusivity, communication and social responsibility, for all students. 

Hidden Talents

The selection committee S4S, under the chairpersonship of Halleh Ghorashi, Professor Diversity and Integration at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, praised LUC’s project proposal for creating a trickle down effect as well as being innovative. ‘What actually makes this project very special is that a top rated educational programme such as LUC shows that ‘internationality’ is not the same as ‘diversity’. Diversity means we need to give hidden talents a chance; talented students do not always come from a privileged background,’ according to Halleh Ghorashi when asked about the Leiden University College: The Hague’s project ‘From International to Diverse’.

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