The UAE's first German university will encourage students to escape the comforts of the classroom to "get their hands dirty" in preparation for the world of work.
The University of Europe for Applied Sciences – which has four campuses in Germany – will welcome its first intake of students at its Dubai home in January for an MBA programme.
The campus, based in the heart of the business centre at One Central, in Dubai World Trade Centre, is bright, open-planned and cozy, with a small library complete with an electric fireplace, capturing the boutique vibe the institution is aspiring for.
Its location in a bustling business environment is also in keeping with an industry-minded ethos, said Prof Maurits van Rooijen, president of the university.
“A lot of the branch campuses here are very much Anglo Saxon and we want to bring in high quality European education," Prof van Rooijen said.
"It's about getting students to understand that studying isn't just about reading a book, or sitting in a classroom listening to a professor, it's actually about getting your hands dirty and getting out there and learning by interacting with the real world.
Developing future workforce
“it's very much about being prepared for the changing world, not just by having the skills and the knowledge but also being mentally prepared for it ... knowing how to deal with complicated situations or what to do when things don't go to plan.
“The key defining feature of our type of German education is the fact that it's very much about engaging with companies.
"We also encourage students to go and do placements or projects with companies and that's part of our philosophy."
He said that the university's launch had been met with support from the business communities in Dubai, especially German companies, offering opportunities for students to gain real-world experience.
Affordable education plan
In an effort to make higher education accessible and affordable, fees at the Dubai branch and the campuses in Germany will be the same.
Students will pay €12,100 (Dh46,972) per year for bachelors programmes and between €10,938 (Dh42,442) and €13,000 (Dh50,443) per year for a master's programme. MBA students pay between €12,332 (Dh47,851) and €13,500 (Dh52,398) annually.
“The fees are exactly the same in Germany, as in Dubai. A student in Germany might want to do a semester in Dubai or students in Dubai might want to do a semester in Germany, that's all possible because the curriculum is the same," said Boris Remes, senior operations manager at the University of Europe for Applied Sciences Dubai.
Students at the Dubai campus will have the provision of transferring to campuses in Berlin, Hamburg, Iserlohn and Potsdam, as long as the course is offered at the chosen campus. Students in Dubai would have to complete a year of study in the city to be eligible for the transfer. Students at the university in Germany will also be able to transfer to the campus in Dubai.
"Students have to complete at least one year in Dubai before they can transfer. Other than visa fees, there are no hidden fees," Mr Remes said.
Established more than two decades ago, UE is an accredited private German university known for its academic excellence in business, technology, and design.
Students will divide their time between studying with chair professors and professors of practice “bringing the real world into the classroom”.
Some professors will travel from Germany to Dubai while others will be based at the Dubai campus.
“One of the reasons why MBA is coming earlier than expected is based on the demand we've seen specifically for the MBA programmes we offer,” Mr Remes said.
If the students graduate in Dubai they will be able to apply for a six-month German job-seeker's visa.
"However, if they were to transfer to Germany and complete their last semester in Germany, they will qualify for an 18-month job-seeker visa," Mr Remes said.
The MBA programme will be the first to launch, in January, while master’s courses such as data science, software engineering, visual and experience design will start in March.
Masters in innovation design management, and undergraduate programmes in business management and digital business and data science will launch in September 2024.