By Tayiba Ahmed
The thought of choosing the wrong university for continuing your studies in can be extremely daunting. But that is also why you should do extensive research and ask the people you trust, or people who have been a part of the institution, for their opinion before you decide which one better meets your needs. And if you are considering pursuing your higher education in this region, then American University of Sharjah (AUS) in one of the top universities to consider, because it does more than just meet your needs.
AUS was founded in 1997, and although it is a fairly young university, it has already gained recognition as one of the top institutions in the region. Currently, it ranks seventh in the Middle East region according to the 2015 QS University Rankings for Arab Region, compiled by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS). The university is also accredited both in the UAE and in the USA.
One of the things that AUS is known for is what it offers students beyond the classroom. It provides its students with the opportunity of partaking in various events to excel in, and celebrates its students’ achievements. As a student at AUS, you have the opportunity to be a representative at the Model United Nations, to compete in regional and international tournaments as a member of one of the university’s various sports teams, and to take part in similar events held both dependently and independently of AUS that allow you to demonstrate your talents, such as the INDEX International Design Exhibition, and the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition. The university also has excellent facilities for its students to use. For instance, AUS students can access an on-campus sports complex that includes a well-equipped gymnasium and an Olympic-sized swimming pool.
Another reason why American University of Sharjah should be your choice is because it offers a wide variety of major and minor programs. As a student here, you can choose your degree program or your minor based on either what the job market needs or on what interests you. However, if you choose not to do a minor, but still are interested in courses that might not be relevant to your degree program, you can take them as a free electives. The university also has a Performing Arts Program for students interested in acting, music or dance. Each semester students taking courses in this program put on plays, musical concerts and dance shows—all of which are open to the public.
A very multicultural community is another benefit that AUS offers. We have students from more than 90 countries, and the faculty and staff members represent various countries and ethnicities, too. AUS celebrates the diversity represented in its community and offers its students the opportunity of engaging with and learning from these different cultures. Through the university’s annual Global Day, students celebrate and share their culture and nationality with the rest of the AUS community. The university also plans overseas trips for its students and has an international exchange program, which gives its students the opportunity to study abroad and have some memorable experiences. The university also has many student clubs and organizations, including interest-oriented and ethnic clubs. Every semester the clubs represent themselves at the AUS Club Fair and recruit students to become members in order to learn from and be a part of the different cultures that make up the AUS community.
A concern for anyone looking to enroll in a university is the tuition fees. This is why the university offers scholarships and financial aid programs. If the student has a good academic standing and meets the requirements set by the university, they may be eligible for scholarships or grants that can make the tuition fees more affordable to them. And, there are also opportunities for students to work on campus, which not only have a financial incentive, but also build practical working skills, too.
There are various things that need to be considered when making a decision regarding what university to choose. Which is why it is important to have a proper guide to help you out too. So, if you want to acquire a degree from a well reputed university, are eager to learn from more than just books, and want the opportunity of experiencing new things, AUS should be your choice.
Tayiba Ahmed is a student at American University of Sharjah.
Visit www.aus.edu for more information about American University of Sharjah.