On Friday we woke to the news of Great Britain’s unexpected and historic decision to exit the European Union – a move that shocked global markets and precipitated global economic uncertainly, including here in South Africa. The vote to leave – dubbed Brexit – has raised the prospect of sustained anxiety as investors struggle to make sense of what will happen next. No doubt over the coming days, weeks and months a clearer picture of the economic, social and political consequences of Brexit will emerge.
For now we know that the UK will remain a full member of the EU until the negotiation to withdraw is complete. This process will take a minimum of two years from the day that the UK formally applies to the European Council. Given the complexity of the withdrawal there is every chance that this deadline may be extended. We also know that the UK’s withdrawal will be a carefully negotiated and managed process, in which British Universities will fully participate.
What does this all mean for current and prospective students at Henley Business School and its parent the University of Reading and in particular those students at Henley Africa?
For now it is very much business as usual. As noted above the withdrawal from the EU will take some time and a large focus of the University of Reading will be to protect the freedom of movement of EU students who wish to study in the UK in future.
For current students enrolled through Henley Business School Africa on the MBA program and prospective students whose applications are in the pipeline, nothing changes – it is business as usual. The same applies to students enrolled with Henley for any of our other programs.
The University of Reading certainly has and will continue to have global ambitions and an international outlook and its work does not stop at the borders of the EU. Outside the EU, the University has a permanent base in South – East Asia in Malaysia and Henley Business School Africa has been in Johannesburg for over 25 years. The University will continue to pursue new international opportunities and expand its global footprint and the Brexit vote will not in any way diminish this strategy.
If you have any immediate queries around Brexit please do not hesitate to relay these to your programme manager or directly to our management team and we will do our best to answer them. Once more information emerges from the UK around the decision to leave the EU we will communicate these.
DEAN AND DIRECTOR – AFRICA