Abu Dhabi: Thirty-three high achieving Emirati secondary school students have been selected to participate in the rigorous 18-month NYU Abu Dhabi Summer Academy enrichment programme as recipients of the 2019 Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Scholarship for Outstanding High School Students.

They were selected based on academic achievement, English-language comprehension, leadership and interpersonal skills, and potential for growth and improvement.

Now in its eighth year, the programme prepares Abu Dhabi-based Emirati students for entry into top-tier English-language universities throughout the world including NYUAD. The programme curriculum focuses on the development of critical thinking, writing, and discussion in English, quantitative reasoning, standardised test preparation, public speaking and leadership.

Taking place during the two summers following grades 10 and 11 and including three semesters of online and in-person instruction throughout the academic year, the Summer Academy introduces students to the academic standards, norms, and values appropriate to the culture of leading international higher education institutions, in addition to providing college admission counselling. This comprehensive educational experience is supported both in the classroom and through extra-curricular activities at NYUAD, NYU New York, and NYU Florence, Italy.

“We are committed to investing in our youth and providing them with the tools to develop into capable future leaders across all sectors,” Shaikha Mariam Bint Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who serves as a key adviser to the programme, said. “This programme provides not only academic and intellectual development opportunities to help them succeed, but also builds their confidence and inspires them to reach their potential.”

During the first summer period, students study for approximately three weeks at NYUAD, and have the opportunity to travel to NYU’s academic centre in Florence, Italy, for nine additional days of study. The second summer session is similarly divided between Abu Dhabi and NYU New York. In addition to continuing their academic programme in Florence and New York, the students engage in cultural activities such as visits to museums, historical sites, cultural events, and private meetings with local leaders. To provide continued support throughout the academic year, students also participate in online instruction and assignments, SAT test preparation, and two face-to-face weekend programs during grade 11.

Executive Director of Summer Academy and Counsellor to Leadership at NYUAD Diane C. Yu said: “The Summer Academy requires rigorous competition for entry and has proven to be a successful college preparatory programme that develops the academic and leadership potential of its students. We look forward to welcoming the newest batch of highly qualified participants in the Class of 2019.”