Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Imran Mojib, Special Correspondent
Graduate students from around the world logged in to attend the special Graduate Orientation session held recently by the American University of Sharjah (AUS) to welcome 120 new students to its Masters and PhD programmes. The incoming students come from a wide array of professional, educational and cultural backgrounds.
“We have seen an increased interest in graduate education at AUS from highly qualified applicants from within the UAE and internationally,” said Dr Mohamed El-Tarhuni, Vice Provost for Graduate Studies at AUS.
“AUS continues to offer high-quality graduate programmes to support market needs and promote research and creative work activities. This year the university offered three new graduate programmes, namely the Master of Science in Finance, Master of Science in Construction Management, and a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering to add to its portfolio of multidisciplinary programmes. We also continue to provide competitive graduate assistantships to qualified candidates to provide financial support, teaching and research experiences for the students,” he said.
Jennifer Vann, who is currently based in the United States, has joined the Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) at AUS and is looking forward to coming to Sharjah when on-campus classes resume.
“I chose to pursue this programme after discovering a hidden passion for language teaching. After starting work at the University of Florida English Language Institute, my life changed because of the many Saudi students at the institute who inspired me to study Arabic. Due to them, I became passionate about learning about Gulf cultures, the different dialects, the various landscapes and so I began searching for an MA TESOL programme in the Gulf. I found an amazing blog post on the AUS website, which really resonated with me and made me want to study at AUS,” she said.
With 16 sought-after Masters and two doctoral programmes on offer, AUS has earned an enviable reputation in the region for the quality of its faculty and its graduates. This semester the university is also welcoming some of its alumni who are coming back to pursue their graduate studies. Kunaal Nanik, who graduated with a Bachelor’s in Finance and Economics in 2007, has returned to AUS to pursue a Masters degree in Finance following a career in tourism, travel, and hospitality. Najla Mohammad, an alumna who obtained both her Bachelor’s and Masters degrees at AUS, is joining the university’s new multidisciplinary PhD programme in materials science and engineering.
During the orientation, the new graduate students were welcomed by Professor Kevin Mitchell, Chancellor of AUS, and several key university officials.
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He toured the corridors of the new laboratories and learned about the Chemical Engineering and Water Desalination Laboratory, which aims to develop and improve the exploitation and management of water resources in Sharjah.