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Dubai pushes bid to attract more international students
Source: Design Unlimited Partners , Author: Posted by BI-ME staff
Posted: Sun October 8, 2017 3:05 pm

UAE. Dubai is pushing its bid to continue attracting more international students, a leading government official told delegates at an international conference happening in the Emirate.

Dr Warren Fox, Chief of Higher Education at the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai, says international students currently make up 30% of all higher education students in the city.

Latest figures show there are over 60,000 higher education or university students in Dubai, accounting for a 65% increase in enrolment figures since the establishment of KHDA in 2007. Since then, enrolment has grown an average of 10% annually.

“Dubai has shown to the world it can become a leading global business hub, and is leveraging this success to attract international students to come to the Emirate to pursue higher education studies here. This reputation as a world-class commercial and trading centre is one of the top reasons why international students are coming to Dubai,” said Dr. Fox.

With a quality of life and standard of living considered one of the best in the world, Dubai’s appeal as not just a business and tourism hub, but also a premier education destination is only going to get stronger.  A US News and World Report survey published earlier this year, in collaboration with Y&R’s BAV Consulting and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, says the United Arab Emirates is the second-best country in the world to start a career and is the safest place to live in across the Arab region.

According to Dr. Fox, location is also an important consideration, and Dubai is an increasingly attractive choice being only eight hours away from two-thirds of anywhere in the world.

International HEPs have been operating in Dubai for a number of years, with foreign branch campuses from 12 different countries, including the UK, Australia, India, US, Russia, Austria, Lebanon, Pakistan, Iran, France, Canada and Ireland.

To further strengthen its capacity, KHDA has set up the University Quality Assurance International Board (UQAIB), consisting of top education experts from around the world, meeting twice a year to evaluate programmes offered by HEPs as well as student performance.

Meanwhile, Roland Hancock, Director-Education, PwC says universities in Dubai would do well to continue building on their success by becoming more agile, describing this as digitally-enabled with a focus on the student journey, financially effective with data driven decision making and with high quality partnerships in place to enhance employability and research opportunities.

“These universities also are profoundly focused on student experience, have a global footprint and provide teaching and curriculum offerings that are aligned to student and labour market needs,” Hancock added.

IPSEF successfully concluded its Middle East and Higher Education conferences, gathering over 200 local and international experts and stakeholders with in-depth presentations and discussions on the education growth opportunities in the region for schools and higher education institutions.

“We hope to continue to provide a relevant platform for those involved in the education business in the Middle East, including our international audience who wish to be a part of this growth,” said Rhona Greenhill, co-founder, IPSEF.

IPSEF now moves to Asia for its next event in Shanghai on April 23-26, 2018 to highlight emerging opportunities in the world’s emerging economic and education powerhouse.

Photo Captions:
1. (above)  Dr Warren Fox, Chief of Higher Education at the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai
2. (inset)  Rhona Greenhill, co-founder, IPSEF (File photo)



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