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UWC focuses on GCC: Apply Now For A Life Changing Educational Experience

If you want to have a kickass education and a life-changing experience, you don’t have to look far because the United World Colleges just made it easier for you to join one of their many colleges spread across the world. Gulf Elite co-founders are both UWC Alumni, and so is the King of Netherlands and the grandson of Kim Jong-il, why not you?

UWC focuses on KSA, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and the UAE

Students, both nationals and expats, from the GCC region are invited to apply for 12 UWC schools and colleges around the world through UWC’s National Committee in the UAE (UWC UAE)


UWC’s National Committee in the UAE (UWC UAE), which is the regional affiliate of United World Colleges (UWC) International, a London-based organization that offers transformational education in its 13 schools and colleges around the world, invites high school students, who are residents in the GCC region and who are committed to UWC ideals, to apply for UWC.

“UWC makes education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future. Our thirteen schools and colleges currently span five continents. Embracing the many nationalities present in each of our colleges is an important feature of UWC life and it helps students to explore and develop an international and inter-cultural understanding,” said Sunita Gomes, Chair, UWC UAE.

An important and unique feature of the organization is the UWC national committee network. Each year over 2,000 passionate and committed volunteers mobilize to select students from an applicant pool of 15,000 students spanning 146 countries. The vast majority of individuals who make up this network are volunteers who work tirelessly to select and support students and promote UWC to future generations.

Mrs. Gomes, Chair – UWC UAE, further added, “A volunteer based UWC UAE was set up in 2013 as an initiative to strengthen our presence in the region. UWC UAE will be also covering our activities in Qatar, KSA, Kuwait, and Bahrain. In the Gulf region, we already have one more national committee in Oman.”


The committee’s main goals in the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and KSA are:

  • To increase awareness, recognition and understanding of UWC
  • To strengthen and develop the UWC’s volunteer and alumni system in the region
  • To increase the number of students, both nationals and expats from the region, who will attend UWC schools and colleges.

Speaking about the application process and selection criteria, Nermine Badawy, Admissions Officer, UWC UAE, said, “Students from the region can submit an expression of interest in applying to UWC. If we find them eligible to continue with the application process, they will be requested to submit their formal application afterwards. They need to be adventurous, adaptable and willing to live in a multicultural environment. Although academic strength is required for the International Baccalaureate programme, students must show that they have engaged in extra-curricular activities and service to their communities. We will also have regard to the following personal characteristics – integrity and honesty, compassion and a commitment to social justice, service to the community, and tolerance and mutual respect.”


To be eligible to apply, high school students must meet the following criteria:

  • Applicants must be between 16 and 17 years of age
  • Applicants should be citizens of or expatriate students, who are residing and studying in the UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait or Bahrain
  • Students must be enrolled in a secondary school in one of the above countries and have completed at least ten years of education prior to their start at UWC.

Elaborating further on the method of selection, Mrs. Gomes, Chair, UWC UAE, explained, “UWC recognizes that true diversity cannot be achieved by one method of selection since there is no one-size fits all approach. All students who apply to UWC are assessed on the basis of both merit and potential. We know that educational standards, opportunities and the implications of social status make it impossible to directly compare students from such a wide range of backgrounds. For that reason, many UWC students are selected by national committees. Our small team is composed of people who live here and thus understand the context of the country and society we operate in. For that reason, we have tailored the application process to the local education situation, system and culture.”

Mrs. Badawy, Admissions Officer, UWC UAE, suggested to all interested applicants to visit UWC UAE’s website. and pointed out, “The application process can take several weeks, so we encourage you to begin as soon as possible!”

Speaking about UWC’s alumni network, Batool Sulaimanji, Alumni Relations Officer, UWC UAE, said, “What UWC students have in common is that they have made the decision to apply for the experience themselves and have been recognized to have the potential and desire to be positive change makers. UWC inspires a sense of idealism, nurtures enthusiasm, encourages determination and teaches the skills needed to make a difference.”


“UWC’s successes in innovative international education have enabled its alumni to attend the world’s most prestigious universities around the world – Harvard, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, Yale, MIT, and LSE. A remarkable scholarship programme funded by a single donor makes some of the USA’s top universities an accessible option for these students who need financial support to continue into higher education,” concluded Ms. Sulaimanji, Alumni Relations Officer, UWC UAE.

For more information, please visit UWC UAE’s website.


About UWC:

UWC is a unique organization that offers transformational education and has proven an unparalleled commitment to scholarship provision. It was founded in 1962 with the vision of bringing together young people whose experience was of the political conflict of the cold war era, offering an educational experience based on shared learning, collaboration and understanding so that the students would act as champions of peace.

Inspired by the pioneering German educationalist Kurt Hahn, the UWC movement has flourished since the 1960s under the successive presidencies of Lord Mountbatten, HRH the Prince of Wales, Nelson Mandela and HM Queen Noor.

UWC has 12 schools and colleges educating students aged between 16 and 19:

Annually 7,500 students graduate from UWC schools and colleges with both the knowledge and the enthusiasm to go out into the world and make a positive impact. Almost 50,000 students have graduated from UWC since the first college, UWC Atlantic College was founded in 1962.

UWC International is governed by the International Board and UWC Council. The executive arm of the International Board is the International Office (UWCIO) based in London. For more information, please visit: http://www.uwc.org/