American University of Malta to Offer Free Tuition for All EU Students

Malta Europe International Studies Higher Education News by Erudera News Aug 05, 2022

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The American University of Malta (AUM) has announced it will waive tuition fees for Maltese and EU citizens for the 2022/23 academic year.

The announcement comes after discussions if the admission criteria breached EU Commission rules.

As the Times of Malta reports, AUM said that it would remove the €1,000 fee for domestic students in a bid to demonstrate its efforts to become a high-quality university. Nonetheless, following the announcement, commenters criticized the institution, saying that students from other EU countries might feel discriminated against.

While Maltese citizens are asked to pay €1,000 to study at the university, EU students must pay €1,500 per semester, according to the AUM rules, although the current EU rules say that EU students pursuing studies in another EU member state should not be required to pay higher fees.

However, a university’s spokesperson said that the university is committed to treating all its students from the EU the same as domestic students.

“AUM intends to treat all EU students in the same manner as national students,” the spokesperson told the Times of Malta, adding that AUM would drop tuition for EU students as well.

The newspaper reports that back in 2015, the Maltese government said that AUM in the future will welcome thousands of students to its campus and help Cottonera in recovering hundreds of jobs.

The American University of Malta was launched in May 2015. It is a private liberal arts college located in Cospicua, Malta.

Similarly, in June, student unions opposed the plan of the Bavarian state to introduce tuition fees for students coming from non-EU countries, claiming that such a decision might lead to fewer international students in the state.

“There is a broad consensus on this in society and politics. In Bavaria, the state parliament last voted for the abolition of general tuition fees in 2013, after one of the most successful Bavarian referendums had previously voted for it,” Matthias Anbuhl, Secretary-General at Deutsches Studentenwerk (DSW), said.

DSW represents 57 student unions.

According to a media release by Eurostat, several EU countries are considering working to increase the number of EU population at the age of 25-34 with a tertiary education diploma to 45 percent, with France, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, and more countries already meeting the target.

Malta is among the countries that were closer to meeting the target, Eurostat reported.

The same noted that in 2020, the number of EU students leaving education dropped to 9.9 percent, from 13.8 percent in 2010.