The number of students studying within Dubai International Academic City (DIAC) rose 20% compared to the previous year. Due to the wealth of courses on offer from some of the world’s leading academic institutions, Dubai is fast becoming a regional hub for education.
In the academic year 2014/2015, the total number of students studying in DIAC reached 24,065, with Heriot-Watt demonstrating the largest student population (4,778), followed by the University of Wollongong Dubai (3,363). Students from 145 countries have chosen to study in DIAC due to its excellent facilities, while UAE Nationals now account for more than 10% of the entire student population. Over the past three years, there has been a 129% increase in students from Russia, a 45% rise in Bahraini students enrolling, a 60% lift in the number of Chinese students, and a 50% increase in Filipino students that now study in UAE. These increases can be directly attributed to a series of student recruitment and sourcing initiatives organised by DIAC in the last 2 years.
Compared to the academic year of 2013/2014, the number of students taking masters degrees this year increased 20% and the number of students studying for doctorate degrees rose 12%. Students are increasingly seeking higher education options to enhance their skill sets and establish a career path due to the significant competition they experience as they enter the working world.
Commenting on the sidelines of the Gulf Education and Training Exhibition (GETEX), an event attracting 35,000 local and expatriate students actively looking for higher education, professional development and training options, Dr. Ayoub Kazim, Managing Director of DIAC, said, “The population of Dubai has increased significantly in recent years, along with rapid economic growth. As a result, we have witnessed a substantial growth in the number of international students choosing to study at one of our institutions due to the quality of training and prevalence of internationally recognised higher education options on offer here.
“From an industry perspective, we are continuing to attract international operators to establish a regional presence in Dubai owing to the ease of market entry, absence of bureaucracy, and positive demographic and socioeconomic indicators. We are proud to be able to offer the advice and expertise needed to assist them in their plans and as such, the number of educational facilities we now support has grown from strength to strength, allowing us to support the UAE Government’s ambitions to drive an innovation-led economy based on knowledge and expertise.
“At DIAC, we support students through all stages of the education lifecycle, from recruitment, placement, study, job application, right through to alumni.
“By providing quality, world-class education, the numbers demonstrate our strong ability to attract transnational students from all over the world to study in the UAE. We are also able to offer our locally based students excellent, innovative educational options by attracting international institutions to the UAE. In doing so, we are helping to develop tomorrow’s workforce, a wealth of future leaders of industry who can significantly contribute to the wider economy and help towards the ambition of building a truly innovation-led economy, as directed by our leadership.”