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7 reasons to study abroad in Saudi Arabia

By Stephanie L

Updated May 4, 2021 Updated May 4, 2021

Sponsored by University of Ha’il

With one of the fastest growing higher education systems in the Middle East and a flourishing economy that boasts exciting career prospects for international graduates, Saudi Arabia has plenty to recommend it as a study abroad destination.

Choosing to study in Saudi Arabia also means you’ll also have opportunities to explore some of Saudi Arabia’s most captivating sights and travel hotspots.

Let’s find out what makes Saudi Arabia a popular study destination for international students from within the Arab region as well for those from further afield.

Home to a growing number of world-class institutions

Saudi Arabia’s higher education system has benefited from significant government investment in recent years. There are 21 Saudi universities ranked in the top 100 in the QS Arab Region University Rankings 2021, and seven universities in the QS World University Rankings 2021, which sees Saudi Arabia emerging as a strong hub for higher education – especially in STEM subjects.

For example, the University of Ha’il which is located in north-western Saudi Arabia is the only Saudi university to offer a bachelor’s in renewable energy engineering. With the Middle East region expected to expand its wind and solar renewables capacity 18-fold by 2025, the University of Ha’il’s College of Engineering recognised the importance of preparing the next generation of renewable energy engineering experts who have the knowledge and skills required to work in such a fast-moving and dynamic field.

The university also offers full scholarships, which includes free accommodation and a monthly allowance for international students on a competitive basis.

A growing and thriving economy

With the Saudi economy continuing to thrive and grow, an innovative and strategic framework named Saudi Vision 2030 has been outlined which aims to position the country as a global hub for international investments, renewable energy and the high-tech industry.

Saudi Arabia is currently heavily investing in building state-of-the-art infrastructure that is designed to stimulate and foster innovation and growth. This includes the NEOM project, which aims to become a cutting-edge futuristic hub of innovation, industry, and sustainability.  

Such developments are opening up exciting opportunities for graduates across various industries including engineering, manufacturing, construction, IT, finance and banking.

Located at the crossroads of Europe, Asia, and Africa

Saudi Arabia is located at the crossroads of three major continents and historically, trade routes went through the country connecting people from all different cultures. This continues today and plays a key role connecting African, Asian and European nations via major land, sea and air routes.

Because Saudi Arabia has the largest market in the Middle East, it is considered to be the ideal gateway for international companies wanting to move into the Middle Eastern market.

Studying in Saudi Arabia and learning about its culture, language and business systems makes students especially attractive to such international companies who are considering setting up businesses here or in other Middle Eastern countries.

A welcoming and hospitable nation

The Saudi people are renowned for their hospitability and are very welcoming. Visitors are considered guests by locals and it is very common for locals to extend acts of hospitality and generosity towards visitors.

A safe country that attracts tourists from all over the world
Saudi Arabia is considered a safe country and attracts visitors from all over the world, thanks to the introduction of its new electronic visa system which came into place in 2019.

It has also recently attracted several international conventions such as the G20 Summit as well as major sporting events including the Dakar Rally and the Formula E World Championship.

The holy cities of Makkah and Madinah

The Arabian Peninsula is the founding place of Islam and the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah attract millions of Muslims from all over the world. Muslims students, or students who want to explore Islam, are especially attracted to studying in Saudi Arabia to learn more about Islam as well as learn the Arabic language, which is spoken by millions of Muslims around the world and in 25 countries across Asia and Africa.

Opportunities to explore and travel that will capture your imagination and heart

Aside from its growing reputation for academic excellence, those who study here have the opportunity to explore Saudi’s distinctive culture and heritage, including its great ancient archaeological sites, breath-taking mountain top ranges, lush oases, colourful coral coastlines and majestic red sand dunes.

This article was originally published in March 2021 . It was last updated in May 2021

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Written by

As the Head of Sponsored Content for TopUniversities.com and TopMBA.com, Stephanie creates and publishes a wide range of articles for universities and business schools across the world. She attended the University of Portsmouth where she earned a BA in English Language and an MA in Communication and Applied Linguistics.

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