UK Minister for Exports Visits Heriot-Watt University Dubai



Mike Freer, UK’s Minister for Exports and Minister for Equalities visited the Dubai campus in December

Heriot-Watt University Dubai welcomed Mike Freer, UK’s Minister for Exports and Minister for Equalities, last month. The visit was part of a wider programme that included the UK Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Speaking about his visit Mike Freer, said, “I was delighted to visit Heriot-Watt University’s Dubai campus in Knowledge Park this morning. The site is another prime example of the UK’s excellence in education. The Dubai campus offers transnational education programmes that are designed, delivered, and quality-assured to the UK’s own rigorous standards. These programmes lead to a UK degree as well provide a pathway to the UK at a later date. Education is a tie that binds the UK and the UAE, and in the future, we hope to see this link strengthen even further, equipping graduates with skills and qualifications that will make them successful in the workplace.”

Professor Ammar Kaka, Provost and Vice Principal at Heriot-Watt University Dubai said, “We were honoured to host Minister Mike Freer at our new Dubai campus. His visit was truly inspiring as we discussed transnational education and growth possibilities in the coming years. Heriot-Watt University has been instrumental in encouraging transnational education in several ways, such as through our Go Global initiative that allows international transfer of students. As a globally connected university, we collaborate closely with our colleagues in the UK and Malaysia to build synergies and enable knowledge sharing while facilitating access to quality UK education to students from the UAE. Minister Freer’s visit was very welcome as we look to cultivate and develop the transnational education corridor here.”

During the visit, Mike Freer toured the campus and viewed the facilities including the innovation, architecture and designs hubs. He was accompanied by Heriot-Watt University Dubai’s leadership team and also met with Student Council members.

Transnational education helps develop local skills, reduce capital outflow, brain drain, and pressure on the local education system. It offers a greater variety of choice for students as well as provides an opportunity for working professionals to upgrade their qualifications while working full time. Being fully cognizant of these facts, universities are now creating customised learning outcomes that address local needs, such as the employment market and national priorities for graduate skills, as well as global needs, such as global citizenship that will contribute to the competitiveness of transnational education and resulting in student employability.UAE has become a significant education hub for students from the UK and vice-versa. In the last academic year, over 6000 UAE students moved to join higher education institutes in the UK and over 14000 UAE students opted for UK degrees in the UAE, via the transnational education route.

Heriot-Watt University’s Dubai campus has been consistently ranked as a top provider of higher education, ranging from teaching excellence and research performance to student satisfaction and graduate employability. The KHDA Higher Education Classification (in partnership with QS) has awarded Heriot-Watt University Dubai a five-star rating in 2019 and 2020.

With an extensive offer of foundation, undergraduate and postgraduate programmes across several specialities, Heriot-Watt represents a destination of choice for students wishing to meet the demands of local business and growth industries. Heriot-Watt graduates are armed with excellent classroom knowledge, cross-functional skills, and practical experience required for developing a lucrative career in their chosen field.