The ‘National Hero Award September 2020’ will be offered to “courageous, committed and professional healthcare workers fighting the coronavirus” and provide full funding for tuition fees in the first year of study at undergraduate or postgraduate level.

In order to qualify, applicants must hold a conditional offer to study a course at Coventry University or Coventry University London, and have applied as a self-funded student paying international tuition fees.

“We’ve got a very active Chinese student community…[and] we thought it was a great idea”

“We’ve got a very active Chinese student community and this particular suggestion came from the Chinese Students and Scholars Association,” David Pilsbury, Coventry University’s deputy vice-chancellor (international development), told The PIE News.

“We thought it was a great idea and we very quickly operationalised it.”

Pilsbury said the team is conscious of the global nature of the outbreak and is actively considering extending the program to some of the other countries that are affected.

“We want to demonstrate that our mission is about attracting talented young people who feel a real passion for making a difference to the world,” he added.

Pilsbury said that he is confident there won’t be any restrictions preventing the scholarship awardees from taking up their positions come September, but if there were they would be “more than welcome” to come in January.

With nearly 10,000 international students, Coventry University has already established a hotline and additional services to help any students who may have been affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

While many of those who apply will likely be healthcare workers, applicants from outside the sector are also welcome.

“But we know that many heroes may want to broaden their skills and knowledge outside traditional healthcare, and many ‘unsung heroes’ may not fit into traditional healthcare roles,” the university noted on its website.

“Many of these heroes have risked their own health to support patients and communities as professional caregivers, nurses, doctors and emergency staff. So we’re proud to be able to pay tribute for their service and bravery with the brand new National Hero Award.”

Additionally, Coventry University will be holding an event on March 16th at the local cathedral in response to the outbreak, the details of which have yet to be confirmed but will be published here.

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