Pop-up CityLabs “Students in exile: testimonies and proposals”

The objective of this meeting was to reflect on the difficulties encountered by young people who start a university career in a situation of exile from their country of origin, in contemporary times as well as in the past.

Virtual Place


Start: 15.10.2021
End: 15.10.2021


Local Association

The idea was to dialogue with current and former students of the University of Liège, in order to address this theme through the narration of diverse life trajectories. It was also a question of adopting a reflexive, temporal and intergenerational approach, by involving students who arrived at the University of Liège at different times and in different historical contexts, and each with their own history, desires and projects. This meeting was organised in partnership with a series of actors working in the city of Liège in relation to the proposed theme. As a follow-up of the workshop, a summary with concrete recommendations has been drawn up and sent to the participants and the authorities and is under discussion for concrete action implementation.

40 including: researchers, university staff members, members/users of local associations, students.

The participants of the round table narrated their experiences and highlighted the main problems encountered by migrant students: language barrier (and learning local language while also studying regular curriculum topics); legal and financial barriers for students to work in Liège (the student visa prevents students from working); psychological challenges, also connected with the bureaucratic procedures; practical and legal issue to get and renew the visa and residence permit, as well as equivalence of diplomas; difficulties of converting student residence permit in work residence permit; social barriers to integration; difficulties to get naturalisation (discretionary regimes on citizenship rules); specific challenges for non-EU students; access to information for non-French-speaking; lack of advocacy by HEI. Inputs to face these challenges have been collected and will be object of further development as a follow-up of the CityLab.


UNIC CityLabs | UNIC Superdiversity Academy | inclusion | Inclusion


Diversity and Inclusion | Inclusion of International Students | diversity and inclusion

Type of Case

discussion group



Organizing unic universities

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