‘30,000 Nigerians to study in UK by 2015’
As the need for adaptive measures to global competition increases, Nigerian students are ever willing to take the necessary steps to meet the need for the global market. This is evident as more and more students struggle to study abroad in developed countries like UK, USA, Australia and other countries with more advanced education system.
In a two-day seminar entitled ‘Nigeria/UK Best Practice in education’, Mr. Iain Stewart, a member of the British Parliament, said that about 30,000 Nigerian students would be studying in various universities across the United Kingdom by 2015. On whatever bases this prediction was made is not clarified; however it suggests the rate of increase in the number of Nigerian students going to study in UK every year.
This number account for seven per cent (7%) of the total UK university population which, according to Stewart, this is a very significant number.
The seminar was organised by Focus Learning Support (FLS) in collaboration with Global Development Partnerships, Sodji Sports Foundation and the University of East London at the Westminster.
The international students market in UK is said to be worth nearly 10 billion pounds. The United Kingdom has earned the reputation for quality education amongst international students worldwide and has resulted to a multi-billion pounds industry.
Stewart encouraged the stakeholders in the UK education sector and politicians to show more interest in this sector because, ‘It is a global market and we have to offer the very best courses and best academic practices if we want to continue to attract students in large numbers,’’ he said.
What this means to you?
This will mean different things for different group of people. For some it is an indication of how much we have lost hope in our education system to meet up with global competition. For some it is an indication of how young Nigerians are willing to go for the ‘best’ quality education. For others, it is an opportunity to embrace. For the opportunities this will bring for potential international students in Nigeria, International Universities has a tradition for offering financial aid to students from countries with significant population in their schools. With Nigeria having such number of students moving to study in these schools, UK universities will be compelled to introduce more financial aid options for Nigerian students. Scholarship providers (companies, organizations and foundations) will also want to give more preference to Nigeria for scholarship awards.
As an above average student aspiring to study abroad, but with limited financial support, the possibility is that among the current existing several scholarship and financial aid options, there are likely to be newly introduced scholarship programmes in future for students from Nigeria to study abroad in UK. While the financial aided students will be a minute faction of the fee paying students, you can still take the advantage when the time comes to fill the spot of the scholarship-sponsored students.
Let’s see how this turns out.