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Venture into a new world

While the UAE’s education landscape is vast, aspiring graduates should look out for certain attributes when vetting the perfect institution and programm


Nisthula Nagarajan

Published: Wed 28 Jul 2021, 12:00 AM

Top universities across the nation are welcoming students for the September intake. As one of the most popular expat destinations in the world, home to over 200 nationalities, the UAE is a melting pot of cultures. The country’s progress, success and bright future attract hundreds from all over. Despite being a relatively young country, the UAE is fast-growing as an ideal destination for students. A primary reason for this is the availability of high-quality education at institutions where programmes are designed to prepare students for the job market of tomorrow while keeping in mind the diversity of their student bodies.

When looking for a higher education institution, only the best will do. The ‘best’ isn’t only defined by prestige but rather by the university’s ethos and facilities. If a student is interested in a research-heavy degree, their chosen university must not only focus on this aspect but also possess state-of-the-art facilities to allow students to gain the complete experience of the degree. The University of Birmingham’s new campus is opening this year in Dubai International Academic City where students are encouraged to research in interdisciplinary teams across all its academic subjects, from computer science to psychology.

A university has the power to define the path that high school graduates take that shapes their careers. Students wish to receive an all-round education that can be utilised in the work atmosphere. Universities that provide premium education in various fields outside of academics are highly valued. A university that offers career counselling and internships to provide real-world experience is also a plus.

Each country has varying systems of education, and one of the most worldrenowned is the British standard and system of education, which was one of the first international education systems to enter the UAE.

The first British university in Dubai was Heriot-Watt University, which this year is celebrating its bicentennial anniversary. It set foot in the UAE in 2005 and proudly serves around 4,000 students from all around the world at its Dubai campus. The brand new campus at Dubai Knowledge Park is a testament to its commitment to fulfilling the demands of those seeking high-quality British education in the UAE.

Even with students returning to classrooms and lecture halls more this year, many universities are combining both virtual and face-to-face education. This will lead to universities having the best of both worlds, the technology of online learning plus the social interaction with the student and faculty body. For example, The University of Manchester’s learning content is delivered through its own ‘edutech’ digital tools. All the university’s programmes are faculty-led and delivered through the blended learning format offering working professionals all the flexibility and convenience of online self-study complemented by valuable face-to-face hybrid workshops and course conferences.

If you’re thinking of switching careers, go for a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) certificate at the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). With a global reach of 150 countries and more than 300 professional and student chapters, IMA seeks to be the leading resource for developing, certifying, connecting and supporting the world’s best accountants and financial professionals in the business. Certification courses can also be used to boost one’s credentials and resume as well.

Universities in Dubai are also continuously upgrading themselves to provide for students’ needs. The world is always changing and evolving, and higher education institutions need to keep up. The Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) Dubai has a smart and connected campus with strategic partners. RIT Dubai endeavours to provide the kind of education that enables students to think for and reinvent themselves. Its co-programmes teach students about startups, hwo to become consultants, to do disruptive learning research with the faculty, and get an endorsed certification.

Dr Sudhir Rana, Assistant Professor in the College of Healthcare Management & Economics, Gulf Medical University, says that even in the healthcare field, there is a need for a multi-skilled workforce and special focus on management skills, which has brought the collaboration between medical, management, social science, tourism, and economics to the surface. It is also important to keep affordability in mind.

In lieu of the pandemic, several universities are offering scholarships and discounts to allow new and existing students to gain the best education at a reasonable price. For all high school students, Middlesex University Dubai will offer a guaranteed 15 per cent academic scholarship, and depending on academic achievements students can be awarded scholarships ranging from 25 to 50 per cent of their tuition fees. It has also frozen tuition fees for 2021-2022 and offer flexible payment plans.

Ajman University (AU) will offer 100 per cent scholarships to top high school students. Along with academic-based scholarships, there are also discounts of up to 50 per cent to AU alumni and their families, while 20 per cent discounts shall also be given to first-degree relatives and referrals.

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