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Rethinking Higher Education for Syrian Refugees in Jordan, Lebanon & Turkey

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UCL Institute of Education (IOE)

C3.09 (Level 3), 20 Bedford Way

London

WC1H 0AL

United Kingdom

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CEID welcomes Dr. Kathleen Fincham to present in the Education in Conflict and Emergencies Seminar Series, 2019/20

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Education in Conflict and Emergencies Seminar Series 2019/20

Rethinking Higher Education for Syrian Refugees in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey

Speaker: Dr Kathleen Fincham, St Mary's University, Twickenham

Seminar Overview

Within the MENA region, more than 5,000,000 Syrian refugees are currently registered with UNHCR. Amongst university-aged refugees, only a small fraction (Jordan – 8%, Lebanon – 6%, Turkey – 1%) are currently enrolled in higher education. This paper, based on empirical qualitative research with Syrian refugee youth, is a critical investigation into their access to, and experiences with, higher education opportunities provided for them by local and international partners. Using interview and focus group data, the paper examines the availability, accessibility, acceptability and adaptability of higher education opportunities currently on offer for Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. The paper argues that while access to higher education is increasing for refugees within the Syrian context, accessibility, acceptability and adaptability of these opportunities to the needs of refugees remains problematic. Moreover, by offering a ‘one-size fits all approach’ with predetermined notions of refugees’ desired ‘functionings’, higher education currently on offer for refugees in the MENA region often fails to address the non-financial aspects of welfare and refugees’ other ‘capabilities’ (e.g. being part of a community, being respected). In this way, it often falls short of enabling refugees to live lives that they have reason to value.

Speaker bio

Dr Kathleen Fincham is the Director of the Centre for Research into the Education of Marginalised Children and Young Adults (CREMCYA) at St Mary’s University, Twickenham. Working at the nexus of development and humanitarian scholarship, policy and practice, Kathleen's professional experience has been wide-ranging and varied, including research, teaching, training, programme and project management, policy analysis, partner coordination and advocacy with education institutions, governments, bilaterals (CIDA, SIDA), multi-laterals (UNHCR, UNICEF, UNGEI, European Union) and INGOs (Oxfam Novib, WUSC, British Council) in Canada, the UK, West Asia and Eurasia (Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Turkey, Syria, UAE), North and Sub-Saharan Africa (Morocco, Ghana, Rwanda, Sudan, Nigeria) and East Asia (China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore).

Kathleen holds a DPhil Education and Development from the University of Sussex, an MSc Gender and Development from the London School of Economics, an MAT (TESOL) from the School for International Training (USA) and a BEd from the University of Alberta (Canada). Before joining St Mary’s, Kathleen lectured/taught at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), the University of East Anglia (UEA) and the UCL Institue of Education (IOE)

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Please note: This seminar and discussion may be filmed and recorded.

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Date and Time

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UCL Institute of Education (IOE)

C3.09 (Level 3), 20 Bedford Way

London

WC1H 0AL

United Kingdom

View Map

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