On October 20th the Council of Ministers adopted on a resolution and issued a regulation on the government programme "Studies for the Outstanding". The programme provides financial support for outstanding students who wish to study at the world’s best universities.
The legal basis for the establishment and implementation of the "Studies for outstanding" has been created by the amendment to the Law on Higher Education and the Income Tax Law, signed in June by the president. Implementation of the programme required, however, adopting a resolution establishing the program by the Council of Ministers of and issuing a regulation covering the conditions of the programme implementation. Their drafts have been prepared by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education.
In a release issued after the meeting of the Council of Ministers, the Government Information Centre reminded that the programme "Study for the Outstanding" will allow to finance masters of particularly talented students at the world’s best universities from the state budget. This solution meets the promise the Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz made in her exposé, when she announced that young, talented Poles would have the opportunity to study at prestigious universities abroad.
The programme will be implemented in the years 2016-2025. It is expected that in this period it will benefit approx. 700 students. The Ministry of Science assumes that in the years 2016-2022, up to 100 students per year will participate in the programme. The programme will be launched in the academic year 2016/2017.
More than 336.5 million zlotys from the state budget will be allocated to the implementation of the programme. The programme will benefit students who have completed the third year of uniform master and bachelor graduates.
"Success in science and research depends now on the active participation in the global circulation of knowledge. Collaboration of scientific communities in different countries allows to increase innovation and further the progress of civilization. Through +Studies for the Outstanding+, ambitious and talented students will be able to use in Poland the knowledge they will have acquired abroad" - commented after Tuesday's cabinet meeting Minister of Science and Higher Education Prof. Lena Kolarska-Bobinska, quoted in the Ministry of Science release.
The list of foreign universities selected for the programme will be determined by the Minister of Science and Higher Education based on the latest Academic Ranking of World Universities (the Shanghai ranking). This list will include the top 15 universities in the overall ranking, as well as top 10 universities from 5 specific rankings.
The person who will begin studies abroad, may receive funds from the programme to cover the costs of the academic year tuition at a foreign university, accommodation and subsistence during the academic year, two trips to the country of study and back during the academic year, accident and health insurance policy.
Program participant will have to inform the minister of any circumstances affecting entitlement to financial assistance and the obligation to its reimbursement. Financial support granted under the program will have to be paid back, for example, if the studies are not be completed for reasons attributable to the participant.
Program participant shall be exempt from the reimbursement of awarded funds if within 10 years after graduation from a foreign university he will work for a total of 5 years in Poland, paying social and health insurance premiums throughout this period. The exemption will also apply to those who complete doctoral studies in Poland. In addition, the program participant will not have to reimburse the support if he does not start or complete studies for reasons beyond his control.
The resolution and regulation specifying the detailed conditions of the programme "Studies for the Outstanding" enter into force on the day following the date of their publication.
PAP - Science and Scholarship in Poland