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University of Copenhagen
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More international students to the University of Copenhagen

Brain gain — The University of Copenhagen can admit up to 180 new international students this summer. Prorector for Education says its »great news« but has not yet decided where the student places will be set up.

When the summer holidays end in September, there will be more new international students on Danish campuses.

This is after a wide political majority has agreed to the distribution of 1,100 new English-language programme places to be set up as part of a wider reform to  master’s degrees. Under the agreement, the universities will be able to create a total of 1,100 additional English-language student places each year in the period 2024-2028, and 2,500 places annually from 2029.

READ ALSO: Prorector welcomes prospect of more international students: »Let’s hope it can actually happen«

The master’s reform was adopted in 2023, and the government set up both a master’s committee and a so-called ‘master’s partnership’ to assess it. They have now provided input: The student places that are set up need to be in demand from businesses, and they need to be located outside the big cities.

For the University of Copenhagen (UCPH), this means it will be able to welcome 180 new international students this year. Prorector for Education Kristian C. Lauta is looking forward to welcoming them:

»International students help foster strong environments, and a vision for both students and staff. This is good for the university,« he says in a written reply.

New ideas and thoughts welcomed

The University of Copenhagen has not yet decided how student places will be distributed between the different faculties. But they will comply with the requirement of relevance for the labour market:

»We all have an interest in our students helping meet the  business community’s requirements – not least international students. We want them to stay in Denmark and contribute to the development of this country,« writes Kristian C. Lauta.

This is also the message from Minister for Higher Education and Science Christina Egelund (Moderates Party), who is looking forward to the import of new students:

»Talented international students are in high demand throughout the country. And a small open economy like Denmark needs new ideas, and the ideas that international students bring to Denmark,« she says in a press release from the Ministry of Higher Education and Science.

READ ALSO: Three international students: Copenhagen is a cool — but challenging — student city

The agreement is a break with the current political line, which in recent years has limited international student numbers. An agreement as recently as 2021 had a broad political majority reducing the number of English-language degree programmes to save on the Danish government’s student grant expenses.

The ministry now says that the agreement on the new reform of master’s degree programmes takes the increase of SU student grant costs, in connection with the increase in international students, into account.