Brexit has led to vast a reduction in the number of Greek students applying to study in the United Kingdom, data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) show. Indicatively there were about 11,500 Greeks at British universities in 2012. Ten years later, estimates put the number at a few hundred.
With the scrapping of student loans and visa-free entry, Brexit has undoubtedly played a role in students from Greece opting for other countries on the continent, for Cyprus and for colleges in Greece that cooperate with British universities.
The latest data from UNESCO show that 36,211 Greeks studied abroad in 2018. A British study, International Facts and Figures 2021, showed that 9,645 Greeks studied at British universities in 2019-2020, with Greece ranking 12th on the relevant table.
China led the pack with 139,130 students, while the EU countries with more students than Greece include Italy (13,605), France (13,430), Germany (12,400), Spain (10,850) and Romania (10,700).
In 2019-2020 the Greek student population in Britain had recorded a decrease of only 2% compared to the previous academic year. However, with Brexit approaching many began to consider their options.
In comments to Kathimerini, Katerina Fengarou, the education marketing manager at the British Council in Athens, said that in 2020-2021 the number of Greeks remained almost at the same level as in 2019-2020, as it was the last year that students from the EU had the privileges of the common European market in Britain.