SDG 1. No Poverty

Report on Specific Indicators for 2021/2022

Research

  • Centre of Research and Innovation in Social Services, Faculty of Sociology and Social Work
  • Centre for Social Policies, Faculty of Sociology and Social Work
  • A multidimensional approach to social exclusion in later life – health consequences for ageing populations, Faculty of Sociology and Social Work
  • Access to online education for students with social scholarships at the University of Bucharest

Institutional structures

The Social and Student Activities Service

University anti-poverty programmes

The University of Bucharest has targets to admit students who fall into disadvantaged categories, as defined by legislation and the specific national context in Romania.

  • Article 205 of the National Education Law no.1/2011, with subsequent amendments and additions, states in paragraph 6: “Candidates from high socio-economic risk or socially marginalised backgrounds – Roma, high school graduates from rural areas or towns with less than 10,000 inhabitants – may benefit from several guaranteed subsidised places, according to the law“. Thus, the Ministry of National Education assigns yearly places to universities for Roma candidates and rural high school graduates (ORDER No. 5626/2021 of 24 November 2021 on the correlation by transfer of the number of places between cycles of university studies and the number of places – study grants-first year- financed from the state budget for state higher education institutions, for the academic year 2021 – 2022) and who thus can apply separately for undergraduate degree programmes (respectively master and doctorate for Roma candidates), under the same conditions as Romanian citizens, on places financed from the state budget allocated by the Ministry of Education specifically for this category of candidates. For the undergraduate admission session 2021-2022, the University of Bucharest has obtained and made available to the two categories of candidates 105 study out of a total of 4530 places, of which 57 for rural candidates and 48 for Roma candidates.
Indicator 2020-2021 2021-2022
TOTAL 4415 4530|
Of which Roma 46 48
Of which candidates from rural areas 150 57

 

  • Roma candidates were also offered 42 study places in the Master’s entrance examination.
  • It should also be mentioned that both graduates of high schools located in rural areas and Roma candidates can apply both for places subsidised from the state budget allocated specifically for these categories of candidates, and places subsidised from the state budget for all Romanian citizens or European Union citizens, or fee-paying places, thus maximising their chances of being accepted to university studies. The University’s strategy is to maximise the occupancy of all available study places.
  • At the same time, to facilitate the access of candidates at high socio-economic risk to higher education, orphans or candidates from foster homes are exempted  from the admission fee.
  • Also, the University of Bucharest, through the UB SEED project – Educational Support for Disadvantaged Students, aims to increase the chances of university admission of students from families with financial and material deprivation through actions carried out over a period of 5 years. As of 2022, the program supported 55 students assigned as follows: SEED I: 28 students in SEED I (entered the program in 2021) who are now high school students, and SEED II: 27 students in SEED II 8th grade (entered the program in 2022) who benefit from 4 types of activities: courses, mentoring, workshops, and financial support.

The University is working with clear targets for the completion of studies, which include students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

  • The Strategic Plan for the period 31.12. 2020 – 31.12. 2023 establishes the indicator IV.10.9. Graduation rate per cohort (Ratio between the number of students enrolled in the first year and the number of graduates with a degree – per cohort) and has a reference value in 2019-2020 of 72% bachelor and 80% master. The strategic plan set a 5% annual decrease compared to the previous year in dropout per cohort. Students in the above-mentioned categories are taken into account in setting this target. To manage their needs and to ensure retention in higher education, an Office for Social and Educational Inclusion has been set up and a strategy to prevent dropouts is being implemented.
No. of graduates 2019/2020 2020/2021 2021/2022
Bachelor 5376 5193 5096
Master 3454 3547 2945

 

University dropout rate 2019/2020 2020/2021 2021/2022
Bachelor 34.78% 35.9% 33.6%
Master 23.67 23.3% 23.3%

 

Success rate in the final exams-out of total graduates 2019/2020 2020/2021 2021/2022
Bachelor 94% 98% 97.5%
Master 84% 89% 96%

The University of Bucharest provides support to students from high-risk socio-economic or socially marginalised backgrounds. Support directions cover the following:

  • Administrative and legal support: through the Office of Social and Educational Inclusion created with the following tasks: developing and implementing a mechanism to identify vulnerable students; developing internal institutional mechanisms to support the integration of students from vulnerable groups into the UB university community; implementing and strengthening a monitoring system for students at risk of dropping out; developing a programme to provide assistance, support, monitoring and improving access to quality education for students with special educational needs and other students from disadvantaged groups; identifying and attracting financial resources and using them to provide effective interventions that will increase access to and improve the quality of education for vulnerable groups; in collaboration with UB structures, to carry out programmes and campaigns to raise public awareness on promoting diversity and combating stigma and discrimination.
  • Access to free healthcare: the University offers free medical services to all its students, through the University Medical Office located in the Mihail Kogălniceanu Student Dormitory.
  • Affordable food: the UB canteen offers students low-cost meals, affordable to all students.
  • Affordable/ free accommodation: the University of Bucharest offered in 2022 students around 5,300 accommodation places in 18 student dormitories, covering approximately 80% of all requests. Additionally, students are eligible for an individual grant for private accommodation.
  • Accommodation in student hostels is based on the principle of previous academic performance but 15% of the places are awarded on social or medical criteria (about 600 places). Students who have obtained the minimum number of credits required to pass the academic year and whose families do not have an average net monthly income per family member higher than the minimum net salary in the economy in the 3 months before the application are eligible under the social criterion. For the academic year 2021/2022, the accommodation fees for budget students varied between 130 lei-160 lei (26-32 EUR). Certain categories considered vulnerable are exempted from paying the accommodation fee: students orphaned by one or both parents, students under social protection and students with severe disabilities and their companions (Art. 25 of the Methodology on accommodation in university hostels).
  • Subsidised transport: in the academic year 2021/2022, students benefit from completely subsidized train transportation and a 50% discount on monthly passes to the public transport network in Bucharest (bus, tram, metro). Our students benefit, on request, from full reimbursement of public transport costs in Bucharest.
  • Unrestricted access to educational resources: the students of the University of Bucharest have free access to the central university library and its branches.
  • Students are informed of the facilities provided by the university. To this end, a Student Guide has been created with the help of the Students’ Association of the University of Bucharest (ASUB), which includes provisions on accommodation, canteen, transport, scholarships, library, medical office, student mobility, counselling and career guidance and the UB Learning Centre. The guide was updated for the 2021/2022 academic year.

To support students from low-income families to complete their studies, the University of Bucharest offers scholarships and other necessary resources and develops support programmes.

  • Students who do not have a good financial situation (whose family has not earned in the 3 months before the beginning of the academic year an average monthly net income per family member higher than the minimum net wage), students with medical problems, orphans or those from children’s homes/family placement can benefit from a social scholarship of 700 lei. The social scholarships are intended to ensure minimum living conditions for the beneficiaries complete the university study programmes in which they are enrolled and are awarded for the duration of the academic year. Of the scholarship fund available at the University, a minimum of 30% of the total is allocated to social scholarships. The existing methodology also provides that social scholarships can be combined with other forms of support, for example, performance scholarships. The forms of support offered by the UB also include occasional social scholarships which involve social aid for clothing, maternity, or in the case of the death of a family member. The complete lists of scholarships offered by UB are available here.
  • Between September 2021 and September 2022, the project Access to online education for students with social scholarships of the University of Bucharest was implemented, which facilitated access to learning for “all the approximately 2,200 students benefiting from social scholarships”, with the aim of “ensuring unrestricted access of students to online education”.
  • Additionally, in 2022, at the University the project Increasing social equity for social inclusion and increasing access to higher education was implemented, with the aim of “increasing inclusiveness social inclusion and access to quality education, both within the existing academic community, and for future students, especially those from vulnerable groups”.
  • In the context of the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine and given the groups of refugees who came to Romania, the academic community got involved in supporting Ukrainian refugees in various forms. Thus, more than 300 accommodation places for refugees have been identified, made available by the dormitories of the University of Bucharest, by the Baptist Theological Institute dormitory, by the Ruth Centre, as well as by CEREFREA Villa Noël. By mid-March 2022, the University of Bucharest has provided a total of over 3000 nights of accommodation for over 700 refugees. Two donation collection centres have also been established and a fundraising campaign has been launched. Substantial help was also provided by offering educational support to those Ukrainian students wishing to transfer to one of the equivalent study programmes offered by the University of Bucharest. At faculty level there were also remarkable initiatives. It is worth mentioning as a good practice the development of the uni4Ukraine platform, an initiative of a team of students and teaching staff from the Master of International Public Affairs in English (MIPA) programme of the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bucharest (FSPUB), which aimed to identify, monitor and present in one place and in an easily accessible form to the public existing initiatives supporting people who have left or intend to leave Ukraine via Romania, with a focus on their educational needs.

The University of Bucharest ensures that students from lower-middle-income countries receive the necessary support to complete their studies and offers them support under the same conditions as Romanian students from disadvantaged categories.

  • As such, students in these categories can benefit from accommodation in university dormitories, social grants and subsidised transport. The International Relations Office offers students support in this direction.
  • To facilitate the integration of international students, the International Relations Department implemented a project in 2022- “Fluid borders and transcultural interaction in today’s academic world”- that included in its objectives the academic and social integration of international students.
  • In line with the efforts of the Romanian Ministry of Education to provide educational support to citizens (pupils, students, PhD students) affected by the military conflict on the territory of Ukraine, the University of Bucharest offers detailed information on the website to those interested in transferring to study at one of the programs it offers. It is also worth mentioning as a good practice the development of the uni4Ukraine platform, an initiative of a team of students and teachers from the Master programme ”International Public Affairs” of the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bucharest (FSPUB), which aimed to identify, monitor and present in one place and in an easily accessible form to the public existing initiatives supporting people who have left or intend to leave Ukraine via Romania, with a focus on their educational needs.

Community anti-poverty programmes

The University of Bucharest proposes and implements projects and initiatives to provide assistance and financial assistance in the local community supporting the start-up of financially and socially sustainable businesses.

  • Between December 2021 and December 2023, the University of Bucharest implemented two projects aimed at supporting entrepreneurship through the implementation and development of businesses, respectively:
  • INSPIRE 2020! –Afaceri inovative pentru un mediu antreprenorial de succes! INNOTECH STUDENT / Innovative business for a successful entrepreneurial environment! INNOTECH STUDENT
  • UBTECH 2020 – Program inovativ de antreprenoriat pentru afaceri de succes / UBTECH 2020 – Innovative entrepreneurship programme for successful businesses
  • The activities of the two projects aim to increase the employment of higher education graduates in different fields of activity. Beneficiaries of both programmes can obtain financial support amounting to 287.000 lei for the implementation of the business plans for 12 months, while creating at least 66 new jobs within 6 months after the implementation of the business plans.
  • Between 20-30 March 2022, the University of Bucharest, with the support of the Embassy of the Netherlands in Romania, organized the student competition Anti-COVID Waves – Hackathon of ideas. Participants had to submit testimonials showing what life as a student in the pandemic was like, and how they project their future at UB. Each winning team was rewarded with a grant of 3000 euros to implement their proposed project. In addition to the money, they also benefited from the support of the UB team in finalising their proposals and achieving their goals.
  • In 2018 the University of Bucharest established the Student Entrepreneurial Society UNIHUB to offer a series of activities dedicated to the development of entrepreneurial skills and initiatives. Some of these activities include support for generating new businesses by students and graduates of the UB; development of entrepreneurial skills and competences; workshops dedicated to the creation and development of professional skills and soft skills; mentoring activities for students who want to set up a start-up; meetings with entrepreneurs, on various topics related to entrepreneurship, creating a business, challenges in developing and managing a business, etc.; workshops dedicated to identifying sources of funding for start-ups; internships for students in entrepreneurial companies; working visits to companies to understand business processes; fairs of entrepreneurial companies to make students aware of their experiences; exchange of experience with entrepreneurs and students from other universities in the country and abroad; support for the establishment of a business incubator. Also, within UNIHUB, teams of students who want to launch a start-up can meet and work on their business plans while receiving advice from experts and teachers. There is also a mentoring and consultancy programme within UNIHUB. Applications for the mentoring and consultancy programme are held annually. The goal of these activities is to connect students who aspire to have their own business (or who have already started a personal initiative) with members of the business community, professors and business specialists who have gained professional experience in this field. Through such actions, UB not only offers support to direct partners (students) but also contributes to the development of skills that are reflected in the wider community through job creation.
  • In autumn 2021, a micro-production was established at the Faculty of Administration and Business, which aims to familiarise the students of the University of Bucharest with the means and equipment for the production of promotional items. Since then, constant investments have been made to increase its activity.

The University of Bucharest implements programmes to improve access to basic services for all. These initiatives can start either from the centralised level or at the initiative of members of the academic community, including students.

  • A concrete action, aimed at supporting groups in financial difficulty is the UB SEED (Educational Support for Disadvantaged Students) programme. As of 2022, the program supports 55 students assigned as follows: SEED I: 28 students in SEED I (entered the program in 2021) who are now high school students, and SEED II: 27 students in SEED II 8th grade (entered the program in 2022) who benefit from 4 types of activities: courses, mentoring, workshops, and financial support.
  • The Entrepreneurship Week 2022  offered young people with entrepreneurial initiatives access to various workshops and learning opportunities, while allowing interaction with experienced entrepreneurs.
  • Another model of involvement is represented by the activities organised by the student circle Business, Ethics and Social Responsibility (AERS) which implements social responsibility projects resulting in numerous donations for those in need.

The members of the academic community get involved either through research that fundaments certain policies, through projects that promote concrete change, or by initiating or participating in dialogue with policymakers. Some examples for the 2021-2022 include:

  • Researchers from the University of Bucharest conducted a study on The access of refugees and migrants to essential social services (health care and education) in Romania, part of a collaboration on a  CIVIS Open Lab addressing Transnational Project on Migration and Civic Engagement in CIVIS Universities. In this CIVIS Open Lab, six member universities of the alliance collaborated to develop initiatives helping people in vulnerable situations. Those six alliances were: National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Aix-Marseille Université, Sapienza Università di Roma, Universitatea din București, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid și Université Libre de Bruxelles.
  • The Orienta4YEL project – Supporting educational and social inclusion of youth early leavers and youth at risk of early leaving through mechanisms of orientation and tutorial action – implemented between January 2019 and December 2021, by UB, together with three other European higher education institutions, aimed to develop, implement and evaluate a set of strategies and practices to promote inclusive education among youth at risk of dropping out. The project is also aimed at disadvantaged young people who, due to their circumstances or the material condition of their family, are exposed to this risk with medium and long-term effects on their material well-being, their family and even their community.

21 martie – Ziua Internaţională a Pădurii
22 martie – Ziua Internaţională a Apei
22 aprilie – Ziua Internaţională a Pământului
10 mai – Ziua Păsărilor și a Arborilor
15 Mai – Ziua Internațională de Acțiune pentru Climă
22 Mai – Ziua Internațională a Biodiversității
5 iunie – Ziua Mondială a Mediului
8 Iunie – Ziua Mondială a Oceanelor
21 iunie – Ziua Mondială a Soarelui
23 septembrie – Ziua Mondială a Curățeniei
1 octombrie – Ziua Mondială a Habitatului
31 octombrie – Ziua Internațională a Mării Negre
5 decembrie – Ziua Internațională a Solului
11 decembrie – Ziua Internațională a Muntelui

SDG 1. No Poverty - UniBuc - Universitatea din București

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