The number of Emirati students choosing to travel to the US to continue their education has been steadily rising since the 2005 – 2006 academic year. Jumping from 1,158 students in the 2005 – 2006 academic year to a staggering 2,878 students in 2014 – 2015 academic year, the UAE has seen dramatic growth in this trend. And while 76% of the 2,878 students will be traveling to the US to work on their undergraduate degree, 12% will be pursuing post graduate studies.
However, the US has also noted similar trend among American students and their educational choices. There has been a 15.7% increase in the number of American students traveling to the UAE for their studies, growing from 634 students in the 2010 – 2011 academic year to 735 students in the 2014 – 2015 academic year.
The steady yet significant rise of Emirati students traveling to the US for educational purposes is due to a multitude of reasons. From the availability of scholarships to the numerous amount of courses offered, the US has become an attractive educational hub for students of the UAE.
During a recent interview with Gulf News, Barbara Leaf, the US ambassador to the UAE, discussed the amount of Emirati students traveling to the US for education. Leaf also stated that the steady increase in numbers is directly related to and reflective of the strengthening and expanding UAE-US relationship.
Since the UAE’s inception in 1971, the US and UAE have been working together to promote a better future. With common interests, values, and outlooks, the UAE has proved to be a reliable and strong ally to the US. As US and UAE relations and ties strengthen over time, key areas of bilateral cooperation and innovation continue to expand for the benefit of both countries.
Education has been a key area of bilateral cooperation for several decades and resulted in the establishment of several strategic partnerships between leading UAE and US academic institutions. These established partnerships allow the US and UAE to promote educational exchanges to ready and empower emerging leaders.
Boston, Massachusetts hosts several of these constructive partnerships, as the UAE has established programs with both Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While on a recent visit to Boston, Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba touched on the UAE’s deep educational ties the country has in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In Boston to celebrate the opening of the third UAE consulate in the US, Ambassador Al Otaiba noted the learning opportunities the city can offer through future bilateral cooperation due to its many organizations and institutions.