Organization Executive Board and Central Administration

Vice-Rectorate Quality and Sustainable Development

Compass UniBE - University Preparation for Refugee Students

The University of Bern aims to reduce existing barriers to access as part of its efforts to promote equal opportunities and diversity. With the establishment of a preparatory program, refugee students are given the opportunity to access and participate in tertiary education. Through a fund, refugee students can be supported with study-related expenses.

The path to a Swiss university is challenging for refugees due to existing structural and institutional hurdles. Strict admission requirements of the universities, especially the high demands regarding language skills and previous education, the difficulty of adapting to a new study system and the question of financing a tertiary-level education contribute to the continuous low number of admissions among refugee students.

To help reduce these hurdles, the University of Bern has initiated the project Compass UniBE - University Preparation for Refugee Students. Compass UniBE enables qualified refugees interested in studying to acquire study-relevant skills and competences and to qualify for admission to a regular degree program.

The Coordination Office for University Preparation for Refugee Students is responsible for setting up and implementing the two-year pilot project Compass UniBE. It supports and advises refugees on issues related to taking up or continuing their studies at the University of Bern.

With the project Compass UniBE, the University of Bern is making an important contribution to equal opportunities in access to tertiary education for qualified refugees. As a university that recognizes diversity as a strength, strives for equal opportunities and sees them as an essential component of excellence in teaching and research, the University of Bern aims to reduce barriers to access and create a working environment free of discrimination.

Compass UniBE – University preparation for refugee students

Compass UniBE offers refugees with the respective educational background, who are interested in studying at Bern University, the opportunity to prepare themselves linguistically, professionally and organisationally for university studies. By successfully completing the preparatory year, they can also qualify for admission to a regular course of study. The focus is on promoting the ability to study and orientation in everyday university life. Participants get the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the requirements of university studies through intensive language courses, the acquisition of basic subject-related and academic skills, and with the help of student mentoring.

Information about the offer

Fund for refugee students

The University of Bern has set up a fund to support refugee students with study-related expenses (e.g. laptop, public transportation, excursions, registration, tuition and exam fees, etc.).
Your donation helps reduce financial hurdles for refugee students and increase the chance of a successful course of studies.

If you have any questions regarding the deployment of the funds or the University of Bern's commitment to refugee students in general, Ann-Seline Fankhauser will be happy to answer them. You will receive a donation receipt for your donation.


Would you like to help refugees pursue their academic path in Switzerland?
Access to higher education is full of hurdles for refugees. In particular, financing a course of study is often a major challenge.

Donations of up to CHF 1,000  can be done directly on payrexx.
For donations of CHF 1,000 or more, please contact us directly. 

Thank you very much for your support!

Supported by the federal integration credit