Humanity is facing the highest levels of displacement on record. According to the UN Refugee Agency, more than 82.4 million people have been forcibly displaced due to conflict, persecution, human rights violations, and violence.
“Recent and ongoing conflicts worldwide, including in Afghanistan and Ukraine, have illustrated the disastrous consequences of physical and political violence,” says Patrick Deane, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “Queen’s is a global institution that champions diversity, inclusivity, academic freedom, and peace. It is critical that we act on these ideals.”
As a result, Queen’s is launching the Principal’s Global Scholars and Fellows program to increase its support for students, post-doctoral fellows, and faculty members forcibly displaced by conflict, political instability, violence, and persecution. The university has made an initial commitment of $1.25 million to this program which aims to offer sanctuary and assistance while also bringing a diversity of insights, talents, and experiences to the university.
The Principal’s Global Scholars and Fellows Program is comprised of two streams. The first—Principal’s Global Scholars—serves to connect undergraduate and graduate students with streamlined admission options and funding to support their learning. The second stream—Principal’s Global Fellows—provides displaced faculty members and post-doctoral fellows with one year of support to continue their academic work.
Queen’s will continue its long-standing relationships with World University Service of Canada (WUSC), Scholars at Risk, and Artist Protection Fund to implement these programs and is also developing alternative pathways to be flexible to the individual needs and aspirations of applicants. More information can be found on the Principal’s Global Scholars and Fellow Program webpage.
“Queen’s has a social responsibility to support students and colleagues who have been forcibly displaced. The need is great, and we will grow this initiative,” says Sandra den Otter, Vice Provost, International. “We recognize that people from all over the world suffer from forcible displacement and that marginalized people experience heightened barriers to finding sanctuary. This program is open to people from all geographic and social locations. We are committed to working with Queen’s colleagues and partners to ensure the ongoing equity of this program.”
The Principal’s Global Scholars and Fellows program originated from the recommendations of a campus working group tasked with operationalizing the global engagement elements of the new Queen’s Strategy, alongside activity to expand support for refugee students from Afghanistan who arrive on campus in September 2022.
Advancement has created a donations page for the Principal’s Global Scholars and Fellows Program so that anyone who wishes to do so can contribute to the university’s support for at-risk people around the globe.
Originally published in the Queen's Gazette.