Tuition fees have been a worry for parents and students across the country as many have faced job losses and pay cuts due to the pandemic. Curtin University's campus in Dubai introduced a number of initiatives to support its current students and alleviate this pressure, allowing the students to focus solely on their higher education.
"The first thing we noticed is that the student's morale gets affected and this in turn impacts their grades and performance. Our Finance team has been working with parents on a case-by-case basis to provide payment plans and bursaries to students who are in need," Professor John Evans, Pro Vice-Chancellor and campus President.
COVID-19 financial relief
Earlier this year, the university introduced a bursary, where students from all five Curtin campuses were able to apply for relief from financial problems related to the pandemic. Many students received bursary amounts ranging from Dh1,200 to Dh5,000, which supported their tuition and living expenses.
“The University’s initiative to help students who were going through a financial crisis due to the loss of income during the pandemic was a very kind gesture. I was a beneficiary and was able to remove some of my stress during that time. I would like to thank Curtin University for the COVID-19 bursary they offered to the students in both the home campus and even the international campuses during those hard times," Omar Rizwan, Engineering student.
Academic and merit-based scholarships
The university has always believed in rewarding excellence. In addition to the pandemic relief initiatives, every year, students are able to apply for funding up to one hundred percent through the Pro-Vice Chancellor's Award and SP Wahi Award for Leadership and Excellence. Students are evaluated based on their academic standing and contributions to the community, amongst other factors.
Keerthana Dana Sekaran, a recipient of the SP Wahi Scholarship for Excellence for Undergraduate Applicants, is a second-year Mechanical Engineering student; she received the award for her outstanding grades, contribution to student and industry activities, and commitment to supporting underprivileged communities.
Explaining her expereince, she said, "I am glad and motivated to take responsibility for educating one deserving student with the same scholarship through the TAG Board in the near future, as soon as I accomplish my dreams of becoming an aerospace engineer at NASA. This is definitely an inspiration for me to dream big and has instilled a sense of confidence in myself. The Engineering Faculty of Curtin Dubai facilitated a lot of industry visits, knowledge sharing sessions and many career development programmes which have been very informative. A huge thanks to the Curtin Dubai community, each of them has been an integral part of shaping who I am today."
Paid internships and opportunities
I was super excited when I was selected for that opportunity; during my internship with Curtin, there were virtual events focusing on personal development, interviewing skills, CV building and many more which gave me some insight on how to ace job interviews
The Curtin Dubai Internship Program was an initiative put in place that provides every student enrolled at the Dubai campus the right to interview with its People & Culture team. The program eventually leads to internships, where they work in a safe environment and understand what the corporate world is like as they study while earning hourly wages or a monthly retainer with performance bonuses.
Jicky Johnson, MBA(Global) student who started her internship with Curtin's marketing department before moving to Deloitte, said, "I was super excited when I was selected for that opportunity; during my internship with Curtin, there were virtual events focusing on personal development, interviewing skills, CV building and many more which gave me some insight on how to ace job interviews."
While scholarships are part of the university's commitment to rewarding academic excellence, there is a need to enable students from all backgrounds to realise their potential. To fulfil this goal and reach out to more students, the university has introduced bursaries of up to 50% of the first year of tuition for its undergraduate and postgraduate programs as well as a tuition grant up to AED 10,000 for the foundation program. Longer term scholarships are available for students who perform at the highest level of their studies.
Students or working individuals looking to further the education can email the university on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 04-2452500 to find out more.