WENR, March 2015: Middle East
Internationally Mobile Students from the Region Increasingly Likely to Choose the U.S.
Since 2000, the number of students from the Middle East and North Africa has more than tripled, according to data from the Institute of International Education’s Open Doors report.
Much of the growth has been driven by booming enrollments from Saudi Arabia, with generous funding from the King Abdullah Scholarship program. Saudi Arabia currently has one of the fastest-growing student populations in the U.S., sending nearly 54,000 students to the country during the 2013-2014 school year. In the 2000-2001 school year by comparison, there were just over 5,000 Saudis studying in the U.S. Also in 2013-2014, the number of North African and Middle Eastern students coming to the States grew by 20 percent.
Despite the benefits of coming to the U.S., the experience can still be incredibly daunting for Middle Eastern students, many of whom may worry about safety, stereotypes and cultural differences, among other issues. With reports of intimidation aimed at Muslims at U.S. colleges and the recent shooting of three Muslims near the University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill, students from the region may be understandably concerned about how they will be treated while in the U.S.
– US News & World Report
February 18, 2015
Egyptian Government Announces Plans to Develop as a Regional Education Hub
Egypt is planning a fourfold increase in the enrollment of international students from Arab and African countries over the next three years – from 53,000 to 200,000 international students, according to a new international student recruitment strategy approved by the Supreme Council of Universities – the body responsible for the planning, coordination and supervision of universities in Egypt – in January.
Egypt currently hosts 4 percent of the global share of mobile students, according to the Global Flow of Tertiary-level Students initiative of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics. To grow Egypt’s share of international students, the strategy will focus on developing plans and activities to improve the country’s international and regional higher education profile and on enhancing teaching, research and residence infrastructure on campuses.
The strategy will focus on attracting students from neighboring countries by focusing on high-need research areas and expanding collaborations and partnerships with regional research centers and higher education institutions. Low travel and tuition costs and cultural familiarity will be selling points under the plan, which also emphasizes the need to secure scholarship agreements and student exchange initiatives.
Egypt has eight universities among the top 50 Arab universities, according to the 2014 QS Arab Region University Rankings. However, political instability and campus unrest could pose a threat to the plans.
– University World News
January 30, 2014
U.S. University to Help Develop New Law School in Qatar
Chicago’s Northwestern University is advising Hamad bin Khalifa University (HBKU) on the creation of its new graduate-level law school in Qatar’s Education City. Northwestern will advise HBKU on curriculum development and faculty hiring for the new law school, which plans to award an American-style, three-year J.D. degree.
The school will open in the fall of 2015 in Education City, a 2,500-acre campus located on the western edge of Doha. The new law program will be the first of its kind in the Middle East. Northwestern University School of Law will serve a key advisory role. Clinton W. Francis, a professor at Northwestern University School of Law, will serve as the interim dean and, with assistance from key members of the Northwestern Law faculty, will help to guide the development of the school’s curriculum, hiring staff and faculty and serving as an advisor to HBKU officials.
Since 2008, Northwestern has offered undergraduate degree programs in journalism and communication at Education City. Northwestern University in Qatar (NU-Q) graduates have gone on to become reporters and editors at media outlets in the Middle East and communications professionals in government and private industry, as well as to create their own media production firms, according to a Northwestern news release.
– Northwestern news release
February 23, 2015