More than half of Emiratis studying abroad on government scholarships have funding halted

A Ministry of Higher Education study also found that of 4,083 students sent abroad, only 912 completed their studies.

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ABU DHABI // Funding for more than half of the Emiratis on scholarships abroad in recent years has been cancelled.

The FNC heard that between 2005 and last year, 56 per cent of nationals overseas on Ministry of Higher Education scholarships had their funding stopped.

Reasons included poor attendance, bad grades or breaches of law.

The data was revealed in a study by the ministry. It found that in those years 4,083 students were sent abroad for bachelor’s degrees but only 912 finished their studies, and 528 of the 1,182 sent abroad for a master’s succeeded.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mubarak, Minister of Higher Education, wrote to the FNC saying a 1984 law listed the reasons as to why a scholarship would be stopped.

These included: a student stopping their studies or not attending for a semester; a student prolonging their education; bad grades with a final academic warning; conduct affecting the country’s image; or a student breaching the laws of the host country.

FNC member Dr Mohammed bin Ham (Abu Dhabi) said the response from the minister had clarified the matter.

Dr bin Ham said there should be further study into why 56 per cent of scholarships were cut so the ministry could address the problems.