SAMS news room

SAMS Director reassures students following referendum ‘Leave’ result

Prof Nicholas Owens, Director of SAMS, has said there will be no change for students arriving in academic years 2016/17 and 2017/18 following the 'Brexit' result of the EU Referendum.

He also stressed that SAMS’ priority in the coming months was to maintain the institute’s high standards in research and to further develop partnerships across Europe.

Prof Owens said: “The EU Referendum result has told us that the UK no longer wishes to be part of the European Union, a unique partnership that has allowed us to contribute greatly to our understanding of the marine environment.

“These are very early days in the aftermath of this very significant decision but whatever happens during the negotiations to come it is likely there will be implications for academic and research organisations, including SAMS; however, we have no idea what these might be.

“SAMS is, and always will be, an internationally-facing organisation and we are inherently a stable organisation with a very strong international reputation.

“We performed excellently in the Research Excellence Framework, which rates the quality of academic research undertaken, we recruit talented students from around the world and we have many good partnerships with industry, government and other research organisations. All these give us significant resilience in the face of change.

“Our immediate priority will be to maintain our high standards in research and to further develop partnerships across Europe.

“As far as our EU students are concerned, it is particularly important to note that, as things currently stand, there will be no change for existing and future EU students arriving in 2016/17 and 2017/18 for the duration of their studies. There is also no immediate risk to SAMS’ EU funding for research, nor are there any changes to non-EU students and research funding.

“We value hugely the work of our European staff and students who, together with our UK and international staff and students, make SAMS the unique and wonderful place it is.
“Now that the referendum is over it is our responsibility to work with governments and other bodies, to ensure a smooth and successful transition to a productive future for SAMS and all of our students and staff.

“As a member of the European Union, the UK made great strides in marine science and environmental issues; however, the UK has always been a leading nation for scientific research and it is important this momentum is maintained, regardless of the political landscape. SAMS is well placed to ensure this happens.”

See the Research Councils UK statement here:

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