At the recent press-conference in Nakipelo media center, Head of the Kharkiv Union of International Students Serhii Usov highlighted challenges international students face in Kharkiv.
According to Usov, international students have problems while collecting documents to apply for Ukrainian visa, finding accommodation for rent and making contact with companies that provide services specifically to help the students to arrange their arrival. The most serious issues can occur while interacting with the local officials, where they may face corruption and bureaucracy.
International students seek for accommodations because student dormitories of most universities don’t provide modern and comfortable living conditions. As a result, they often fall into the grip of fraudsters. For example, grifters rent an apartment for a short stay and after that take rent from the students for several months in advance and after a couple of days, the fraud is revealed.
Together with reputable service companies, which arrange their arrival into the country and further studying at universities, there are many dirty players, so that students find themselves at risk of becoming illegal residents.
While Ukrainians are generally tolerant of international students, local officials purposely can create additional bureaucratic problems or even ask for bribes.
Usov mentioned that much more attention should be paid to solving these problems as international students are among the least protected groups in Ukraine.
He also noted that over 11 billion UAH ($ 382 million) Ukrainian budget has gained from international students. This money is crucial for the education sector, so that much work has to be done, to attract more overseas students and provide a better life for them.
Text: Maryna Kosenko