Two students in the UAE win Rhodes Scholarships to study at Oxford University

Sara Fekri and Guste Gurcinaite were selected as 2023 UAE Rhodes Scholars

Sara Fekri and Guste Gurcinaite have been awarded the Rhodes Scholarship to study at the University of Oxford. Photo: Rhodes Scholarship for the UAE
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Two students from the UAE have been awarded the Rhodes Scholarships to study at Oxford University from October next year.

The selection committee for the Rhodes scholarship awarded two places at the university to Sara Fekri, an Emirati student at King’s College London, and Guste Gurcinaite, a Lithuanian studying at NYUAD, who is completing her BA in Political Science.

Both were selected after nominating themselves for the award along with more than 60 other students.

Ms Fekri is completing a BSc in Physics and will pursue an MSc in Mathematical and Theoretical Physics at Oxford.

Ms Gurcinaite is completing her BA in Political Science. She is hoping to complete an MPhil in Environmental Change and Management at Oxford.

They were chosen by a committee chaired by Omar Saif Ghobash, Assistant Minister for Cultural Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Both students will start at the British university in October 2023.

“When I was eight, my mother told me that my father wanted me to attend one of the world's top educational institutions,” said Mr Ghobash.

“From then until I was 17, I focused solely on gaining admission at a top university. I went to Oxford and met Rhodes Scholars.

“I remember wishing that I could apply for the scholarship as an Emirati. I am so proud that the UAE has made this opportunity available to eligible students in the country.”

Since 2014, there have been a total of 18 UAE-based students who have received the scholarship.

Last year, Emirati Rashid Alrafie and NYUAD student Uljad Berdica were selected as the 2022 UAE Rhodes Scholars.

Established in 1902 by the late British businessman Cecil Rhodes, the Rhodes Scholarship is one of the world's oldest awards for international fellowship and academic study. Applicants are selected through an intensive process including a written application and in-person interviews.

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Updated: November 20, 2022, 12:58 PM