SFU Refugee and Newcomer Programs

In line with the principles and values of equity, diversity and inclusion, SFU is committed to creating a welcoming and inclusive university for the refugee community and actively responding to the global refugee crisis. SFU has a multipronged approach to engaging with refugee communities, including through research, scholarships and support services for prospective and current refugee students. We have partnered with a multitude of local, national and international stakeholders to explore ways to further support the refugee community both in Canada and globally.

Background Facts

In the first few months of 2022, over 100 million individuals were displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, violence or human rights violations.

Among them are nearly 27.1 million refugees, around half of whom are under the age of 18.

5% of refugees attend post-secondary education institutions, compared to a global average of 39% among non-refugees.

The Government of Canada aims to welcome 411,000 new permanent residents in 2022 and 421,000 in 2023.

Who is a Refugee?

According to the 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and Canada Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), a refugee is:

Any person, who by reason of a "well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion:

i) is outside the country of their nationality, and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail themselves or the protection of that country, or

ii) not having a country of nationality, is outside the country of their former habitual residence as a result of such events, is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to return to that country."