Tuesday 28 March 2017


The British Council is launching a series of short films on YouTube highlighting the life-changing impact studying in the UK has on those coming from abroad - and the inspiring things international students go on to achieve when returning home.

The films, produced by the British Council and the GREAT Britain campaign, are part of Study UK: Discover You, which promotes the quality and diversity of British education overseas so that a UK education is the first choice for the brightest and best students in the world. Twenty-five films will be produced during 2017-18 and include alumni that have made an extraordinary impact on lives and communities in over 15 countries.

First in the Study UK: Discover You film series is Leeds College of Art alumna, Ria Sharma - http://tinyurl.com/lwd7zxk

Following Ria’s graduation in 2014, she returned home to India and founded Make Love Not Scars – an NGO that works not only to help and rehabilitate acid attack survivors but to seek justice for them. Through its work, the foundation has created legal benchmarks for cases relating to acid attacks.

Ria explains that Make Love Not Scars was initially a college project; but encouragement from her tutors inspired her to make the project a reality.

Ria said: “I chose to study in the UK not just to get an education but to have a life experience…If I hadn’t gone to the UK then none of this would have happened because I was so de-sensitised to the problems of my own country that I had to go somewhere else to see how other people lived in order to come back and make a change. “It was a life-changing experience and made me a better human being”. 

Ria went on to win the Study UK Alumni Award 2016 for Social Impact in India.

The alumni film-series highlights all the aspects of the UK higher education system that make it world-renowned: its impeccable academic standards, its progressive and supportive teaching, its internationally recognised qualifications and its positive impact on graduate employability.

Recent research carried out by the Higher Education Policy institute shows that 55 world leaders (Presidents, Prime Ministers and monarchs) from 51 countries attended higher-level education in the UK.

Increasing access to a UK education, Study UK: Discover You creates friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries.

The campaign will reach out to millions of children and young adults around the world, engaging them on higher education opportunities and giving them the support to flourish, thrive and grow.

Since 2013 thousands of alumni of a UK education have returned home to transform their lives, communities and countries. 

The campaign has generated an additional £214m of income for the UK.

Notes to Editor

Notes to Editors: For more information, contact thomas.niblett@britishcouncil.org or tel 020 7389 3175

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide.

We work in more than 100 countries and our 8,000 staff – including 2,000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the arts and delivering education and society programmes.

We are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter. A core publicly-funded grant provides 16 per cent of our turnover which last year was £973 million. The rest of our revenues are earned from services which customers around the world pay for, such as English classes and taking UK examinations, and also through education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. All our work is in pursuit of our charitable purpose and supports prosperity and security for the UK and globally.

For more information, please visit: www.britishcouncil.org  You can also keep in touch with the British Council through http://twitter.com/britishcouncil and http://blog.britishcouncil.org/

The GREAT Britain campaign

The GREAT Britain campaign showcases the very best of what the country has to offer to encourage the world to visit, study and do business with the UK.  It has generated returns of more than £2.7bn for the UK economy since 2012.

About Study UK: Discover You ; the Education is GREAT campaign is designed to promote the best of British education overseas and support the global objectives of UK universities. The Study UK: Discover You initiative focuses on the experiences, knowledge and confidence that students can gain from UK study, whether in the UK, or overseas or through distance learning, online provision, and other models. The campaign is being delivered by the British Council and supported by nearly 100 universities.

About the StudyUK Alumni Awards

The Alumni Awards celebrate the outstanding stories of alumni who have studied in the UK and gone on to achieve success and make a positive difference in their professions, societies, communities and countries.