Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi Education Council (Adec) has received over 900 applications for its 2011-12 scholarship programme, the council announced yesterday.

The submissions, which were double the number received for the 2010-11 programme, were for students wishing to pursue degrees in electronic engineering, electrical engineering, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, economics, accounting, finance and medicine.

"[Applications for] electrical, chemical, electronics, and mechanical engineering are mostly neck and neck [among] students priority choices for specialty. The new priority interests of the government, we feel, sparked the surge in such specialties," Mona Majid Al Mansouri, division manager of guidance and scholarships at Adec, said.

The programme is open to UAE nationals who have scored 85 per cent and above in their General Secondary Certificate or its equivalent exam at private schools as well as current university students who have completed 30 credit hours while maintaining a cumulative 3.0 GPA. The documents required to apply for the Adec-based scholarship include an admission letter from the university concerned, official transcripts (high school and/or university), a birth certificate, national ID, copy of passport or copy of the family book.

Screening process

"Around 200 scholarships will be awarded to those who met the requirements set by Adec's scholarship committee in September...the screening process took place in August and included psychometric tests and interviews. The interviews were conducted in cooperation with the Abu Dhabi government and semi-government entities, such as the Department of Transport, the Saadiyat Cultural District, the Urban Planning Council and the Advanced Technology Investment Company (Attic)," Al Mansouri said.

The scholarships are for students pursuing their higher education in the UAE, at both government and private universities, including the UAE University, the Higher Colleges of Technology, Zayed University, Paris Sorbonne Abu Dhabi, New York University Abu Dhabi and the American University of Sharjah.

Those chosen will receive a monthly allowance, with outstanding students receiving bonuses while those who perform poorly will be subject to Adec's policies.

Monitoring system

"Adec will monitor the recipients on a semester by semester basis. To maintain the scholarship all students are required to complete at least 15 credits each semester with at least a 3.00 ‘B' or above, and 30 credits with 3.00 or above each academic year. Any student who fails to maintain that required level will be subjected to a warning and if he fails to do so for the second time he/she will be subjected to a financial hold and eventual cancellation," Al Mansouri said.