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International Scholarships with Najah Expo

Has it ever crossed your mind that you could train to be an engineer at Harvard? Or a lawyer at Oxford? Has the cost always positioned this goal just out of reach? We at Najah can help you achieve your goal, by explaining how to apply for international scholarship and the qualifications required to obtain that dream career.

October welcomes the return of Najah Expo in Abu Dhabi and Dubai for its 16th successful year of guiding students into higher education around the world. A strong focus of the event is to uncover the endless possibilities of fully funded and part-funded scholarships available to attendees, both at their doorstep and further abroad.

Grab your boater and oar, we’re off for poetry and punting in Oxford! If you don’t know what that means you soon will. Our panel of experts will deep dive into the complexities of studying abroad and international scholarship application to identify how this dream can become your reality  and will allow you to write your own narrative that turns “I wish” into “I will do”.

Register now to rub shoulders with our stellar lineup of experts covering all educational avenues and to connect with global colleges and universities offering scholarships for international students. 

Najah Expo Helps Students Connect with International Scholarship Providers

Typically, students are fully aware that there is a cost attached to higher education, but did you know you could be eligible for free tuition? The thought of student debt that takes years to pay back can be off-putting and deter capable students from progressing their qualifications, but what many are unaware of is the opportunities, both abroad and in their country of origin, to apply for a scholarship.

The diversity of the differing types of scholarship is broad so it’s worth investigating to see whether you fit into the eligibility criteria for your chosen course. Depending on where you apply, a secured place in an undergraduate program may be necessary before applying for the scholarship, in other instances, they are obtained hand in hand.

Who do I apply to?

Scholarship opportunities aren’t just offered directly by the universities themselves, the UK government, for example, runs ‘Student support’ schemes to fund higher education and post-graduate courses for international students. This is another route to consider if you know you want to study in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. 

Another example is the Australia Awards Scholarships include a contract between the Commonwealth of Australia and the applicant whereby full tuition fees are granted following compliance with the scholarship terms. Globally, external organisations and charities also run recruitment programs to help place international students in higher education.

Types of Scholarships

Scholarships are historically for the very clever or very sporty, universities trying to attract the brightest or the fastest to attend, whether they can afford it or not. Over time this area of inclusion has developed and extra-curricular subjects such as music now account for a healthy percentage of scholarship undergraduates. Personal circumstances are also considered for those who have the capability of obtaining a degree but wouldn’t ordinarily consider applying.

Women-only scholarships

Women-only scholarships are proving popular across the globe, particularly in STEM at the PhD level. Charities are also responsible for funding students, often encouraging racial or socio-economic diversity. External organisations utilize industry scholarships as a recruitment drive by offering a job at the end of the course. Marketing-led scholarships are essentially an exercise by companies to expose their brand to students.

UAE scholarships for Emiratis or expats

Abu Dhabi University offers a number of different scholarship categories so if you decide to stay in the UAE, there are many local avenues to explore locally. Fully and part-funded scholarships are available at United Arab Emirates University (ranked 5th last year in QS Arab Region University Rankings) and Khalifa University (also ranked in the QS Arab Region top 10) which offers various programs including externally sponsored courses for both under and post-graduates. Book your Najah Expo ticket now to establish dedicated time with the UAE education experts.


Scholarships with UK universities

There are numerous universities in the UK offering undergraduate and post-graduate scholarships. Depending on which part of the country you wish to reside in and the preferred course length (Tip - in Scotland undergraduate courses are all 4 years, in the rest of the UK they are 3 years) here is a list for you to start your search. 

Universities you can look into include:

  • University of Nottingham 
  • UCL
  • Kingston University
  • Imperial College London
  • University of Bristol
  • Cardiff University
  • University of Edinburgh
  • Queen’s University Belfast   

Scholarships with US universities

For most colleges in America there is a rigid application process incorporating SAT or ACT exams for those studying Maths, English and Science. However, the University of California has its own system, including presitgioues ones such as MIT and Yale which have a need-blind admissions policy with a full-need financial aid response. This enables US and international students with a lower socio-economic background to attend some of the best universities in the world.

Universities you can look into include:

  • University of California

  • MIT

  • Princeton

  • Harvard

  • Yale

Scholarships with Australian universities

When Al Ain just isn’t far enough away you could always consider heading down under to indulge in the relaxed ‘aussie’ way of life with full scholarships to study abroad. Victoria University offers scholarships for on-campus learning as well as online certificates. The University of Sydney has both faculty-specific and general funding across under and post-graduate courses. Monash University focuses on merit-based scholarships and Australian National University has a variety of different types.

Universities you can look into include:

  • Victoria University

  • University of Sydney

  • Monash University

  • Australian National University


Applying for a scholarship can be an arduous task, writing about yourself doesn’t necessarily come naturally to us all. Research is key and there is an abundance of online help available (scroll down for our glossary of blogs and links). Additionally you can always speak to your teachers to gain insight into their experiences.

What to submit?

Most universities will request a letter of recommendation, list of exam results and an essay about a specific topic to accompany the online application process, (in the UK a personal statement is also essential).

Key terms to include in a personal statement:

  • Extracurricular activities - what are your hobbies and interests
  • Volunteering - how have you helped someone/something
  • Leadership skills  - examples of how you have shown these
  • Academic achievements - in some cases your grades are not the most important factor but always essential to include
  • Financial requirements - what you require to fulfil your university placement
  • Sports - team player skills and individual achievements
  • Community/school responsibilities - your contributions to an organisation

Top tips to apply for a university scholarship

Don’t be surprised if the scholarship provider requests a printed version of your application including original documentation to validate your initial online request for a placement. All scholarship applications have eligibility criteria, varying from nationality to ability, however, most will require a pre-approved place on the university course prior to assessing you for a scholarship. It’s vital that you’re super organised to ensure you submit all paperwork within the time constraints of each part of the application process. Get in early to increase your chances!

International Scholarships and FastWeb are a good place to start with an extensive list of providers across the globe. If you have already pinpointed the country you wish to study in often their government website will be a wealth of knowledge on scholarships to study abroad and higher education opportunities, for example DAAD for studies in Germany and the British Council covering the UK. As part of the USA’s internalization program they introduced the #Youareallwelcomehere campaign in 2019 to encourage more international students to study at all participating colleges.

Sadly, there are scammers out there so beware of any sites asking for money to “guarantee a scholarship”.

If funding is the only thing stopping you from fulfilling your childhood dream of becoming an astronaut, no need to worry - there is a scholarship program out there for you.

Glossary of keywords to become familiar with during the process:

Fully-funded scholarship - 100% tuition fees, accommodation, living and travel expenses

Part-funded scholarship - tuition fees part or fully paid but no additional finance given

Need-based scholarship - eligible based on financial aid

Merit-based scholarship - eligible based on achievement

Need-blind admissions - accepting students despite financial resource (or lack of)

Full-need submissions - students who require full scholarship

Don’t be put off by rejection, if one course doesn’t have the funding for you, it doesn’t mean it’s the end of the road. Apply to as many as you wish to increase your chances of acceptance.

Book your visit now for Najah Expo and it could be you flying off to your dream destination to study free of charge in 2023.


“Najah Expo really opened my eyes to what was on offer for me as an expat student living in Dubai wanting to study abroad. I had no idea I could apply for a scholarship to do so and now I’m in my second year of law school in the US.”