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Students prospects improve thanks to award

* 21 October 2002 *

Student's prospects improve thanks to award



A cash-strapped student who was forced to return home to Romania for financial reasons has had the future of her studies secured thanks to a £6,000 award.

Silvia Murari began her postgraduate studies in English Literature in January but had to return home to Sibui in Romania. She has now been able to return to the University of Sussex thanks to a CSU Prospects Globe Award.

The award scheme is run by the national Careers Services Unit (CSU) in conjunction with Prospects Postgraduate UK magazine. Every year, four institutions are awarded £6,000 each to help towards the living expenses of international students studying in the UK.

"You should have seen my face when within one hour everything about my future changed," says Silvia. "Students from my country yearn for such an opportunity."

Silvia previously studied at Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca in Romania, specialising in Anglo-Irish literature. She is now researching the writings of Irish dramatist Brian Friel, using a post-colonial approach to study his plays in their cultural and historical context.

Professor Norman Vance, Co-Director of the University's Graduate Centre for the Humanities, was instrumental in getting Silvia to Sussex. His books were on Silvia's reading list in Romania and she contacted him with her original research proposal.

"For someone studying English literature it is so important to come to England to see how it really is," she says. "But it is really difficult to fund your studies when you come from a country in Eastern Europe that is not part of the European Union - which means you have to pay the overseas fees."

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