Danish Student Grants Now Open to UK/Irish Students Under Recent European Court Ruling?
Written in News & Updates on Wednesday, 10 April 2013 04:09

 

A recent ruling from the European Court of Justice has opened up the possibility of UK and Irish students being able to access the Danish system of student grants and, at the same time, has potential to throw the funding of Danish education into disarray.

Stakeholders, including Danish universities, politicians and commentators, are still trying to clarify the impact of the ruling. Per Andersen, Chairman of the Danish Student Grants Committee suggests it is too early to know what the consequences of the ECJ’s decision will be for Denmark.

However, in discussion with several Danish universities, EUNiCAS is told that the current understanding is that all EU citizens studying in Denmark, and who work 10-12 hours per week, attain the status of ‘employee’ under EU law. With this status, they are entitled to apply for grant and loan support. It also appears that the Danish government has resolved that the EU ruling will be enforced.

This ruling is likely to expose Danish taxpayers to a bill running to tens of millions of Euro. Minister of Education Morten Østergaard said the ruling would cost Danish taxpayers DKK200 million a year. “We have found measures within the budget to cater for this year’s expenses,” he told Denmark Radio. The story is only just starting to hit the Danish media with any significant populist force and is likely to prove incendiary when its implications are clear.

Aarhus University

 

The level of support offered to Danish students far exceeds the international average. Firstly, in Denmark, there are no tuition fees (for all Europeans) and any Dane living away from home can receive a grant of €771 per month and a loan of €394 per month for living costs. What is more, Danish graduates face one of the lowest youth unemployment rates in Europe (14%).

Though the application deadline for most undergraduate programmes in Denmark , for Entry 2013, closed last month, there are still a limited numbers of opportunities. However, we can expect a significant increase in applications to Danish universities, from UK and Irish students in 2014, if this ruling is applied as understood above.