A total of 250 students would be selected for scholarships and the remainder would be picked next year. (Supplied)
January 05, 201
Government offers 583 fully funded scholarships in 23 leading universities
All scholars would be selected “purely on merit” through a system devised by the commission
ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia has announced 583 fully funded scholarships for Pakistani students at 23 leading universities in the Kingdom.
In a joint announcement, Saudi and Pakistani officials said that the Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan will process applications and award 400 scholarships to students studying for bachelor’s degrees, 100 for master’s degrees and 83 for Ph.D. students hoping to study at Saudi universities.
The scholarships will cover all disciplines, except for health and medicine.
Planning for the scholarships was handled by Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki, the Saudi ambassador to Pakistan, and Ali Mohammed Hawsawi, the Kingdom’s cultural attache in Islamabad.
Hawsawi said Saudi Arabia has been awarding limited scholarships to Pakistani students for several years, but would now offer a much larger number.
“Pakistani students can gain admission at all Saudi universities in any subject of their choice, unlike in the past,” Hawsawi said. “We are brother countries and we hope this opportunity will benefit both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.”
Hawsawi and Al-Malki discussed the selection procedure of students with Pakistan’s Education Ministry. In the past, Pakistani students had to apply directly to Saudi universities for scholarships or make inquiries through the Ministry of Education. Now only the HEC will process scholarship applications.
“We hope when Pakistani students return after the completion of their studies in Saudi universities, they will be able to contribute positively in their respective fields,” Hawsawi said.
The HEC is advertising the scholarships on Pakistan national media with Jan. 31 as an application deadline.
“This is a welcome addition to the HEC’s foreign scholarships program and we hope this collaboration with Saudi Arabia will continue in the years to come,” Ayesha Ikram, HEC’s media director, said.
She said all scholars would be selected “purely on merit” through a system devised by the commission. A total of 250 students would be selected for scholarships and the remainder would be picked next year.
The Kingdom will provide health care for students and their families as well as accommodation, food, return air tickets and special allowances, such as two months’ stipend on arrival in Saudi Arabia and three months’ graduation allowance for shipping books.
Tertiary institutes where Pakistani students can apply include King Abdul Aziz University, King Saud University, King Faisal University, King Khalid University, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, and Princess Nourah bint Abdul Rahman University.
“I am searching for my relevant discipline at Saudi universities and will apply for the scholarship in a couple of days,” said Azka Noreen, who plans to pursue a doctorate in biochemistry.
“This will help me to study at a top university in Saudi Arabia and also explore many historic places in the Kingdom.”
Categories: The Muslim Times