US universities aiming to attract Bruneian students

National 2 minutes, 9 seconds


BRUNEIAN students studying abroad have the ability to contribute socio-economic makeup of top higher learning institutions by contributing to their international diversity, according to a representative from US University.

International Student Recruitment Specialist from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) Beau James said the university is looking to establish collaborative relationships with local institutions and draw more Bruneian students, as part of their wider agenda of increasing their international student diversity.

“Bruneians can help our students to develop better understanding of global culture and be responsive when working in a multi-cultural setting,” said James on the side lines of Belait’s first US education fair hosted at Sayyidina Ali Secondary School in Kg Pandan in Mumong yesterday afternoon.

He noted that in an increasingly globalised world, most students in technical industries are bound to work in teams comprising of different ethnic backgrounds, or will have to travel internationally for work.

“Such partnerships or collaborative programmes can help in building global competency and as this is the first time we reach out to Brunei we are looking forward to interact with Brunei technical institutions,” said James.

He added that the response from the fair - NWTC’s first ever in Brunei – has received strong interest from local students for their electrical, mechanical and marine engineering diplomas and degrees.

“These engineering programmes suits well with our university and part of our country, which is a major manufacturing and exporting industry with many shipbuilding companies,” he added.

Public Affairs Officer from the US Embassy in Brunei Dr Edward Findlay said that the embassy is ready to assist US universities on collaborative programmes in technical and vocational training or internships which can benefit Bruneian students.

“It is common for international students to look for internship opportunities for specialised training as part of their studies in their third or fourth year of study, which is optional for any students in US,” said Findlay.

“We are happy to assist, but it is up to the US universities to approach the local technical institutions.”

At the moment, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) is the only higher learning institution in Brunei to have collaborative programmes with universities in the US.

The number of Bruneian students studying in the US is increasing, according to the latest report by Open Doors on International Educational Exchange.

2014/2015 saw 73 students pursuing undergraduate degrees, a 23 per cent increase from 2013/2014.

US universities, which is the largest higher education system in the world offers a great deal of choice with high quality of education. It is also the number one destination in the world for international students.

The Brunei Times