Kuwait, often dubbed as the “Hidden Gem of Persia”, is a wealthy Arab country home to one of the largest petroleum and oil reserves in the world. A country that prides itself on its highly successful economy, it is no surprise that Kuwaiti education generally specializes and gives added focus on finance and engineering courses–a staple that attracts thousands of international students each year. With the added economic insights and rich cultural heritage opportunities, the country offers its prospects a first-hand experience of, rather begs the question of “Why not Kuwait?” than “Why study in Kuwait?” for many.
For this article, we will be discussing some of the best scholarships in Kuwait you can find to help you navigate your way through your academic journey in this country.
Living Costs in Kuwait for International students
The cost of living in Kuwait is on par with that one would expect to see in most European countries. Living in one of the wealthiest countries in the world doesn’t come cheap. Students can expect to pay 180 KWD up to 540 KWD for rent, not counting utilities that usually cost around 80 KWD per month. As for other costs, food is usually priced at 25 KWD per meal; although this cost is considerably cut down by buying in souks (where prices for grocery items vary greatly). Concurrently, the maximum fare for a one-way trip through public transport is 30 KWD.
The recommended monthly budget for international students studying in Kuwait is 200 KWD for living expenses alone.
Can international students work in Kuwait?
International students are not allowed to work in Kuwait. This makes scholarships and other additional sources of funding more important when considering the country as a destination for abroad study. Violation of these restrictions and protocols may lead to deportation.
Top Universities in Kuwait:
Kuwait is among the favorite study destinations for international students from its fellow Gulf Corporation Council (GCC) neighbors. Offering a wide variety of programs to choose from and specializing in business and trade, it is no wonder Kuwait receives the most international students in the Gulf region. Home to 11 colleges and universities, perhaps the most popular Kuwaiti academic institution is Kuwait University. Kuwait University is widely recognized as the top-performing university in the country. At the same time, contenders such as Gulf University for Science and Technology (GUST) and the American University of the Middle East (AUM) follow closely behind. Many of these universities are affiliated with American and other foreign international schools, sometimes offering dual-enrollment schemes for their students.
Best Scholarships in Kuwait
1. Kuwait Ministry of Higher Education Scholarship (MOHE)
The Kuwaiti Government sponsors in-bound and out-bound study abroad scholarships between Kuwait and its friendly foreign countries every year. This is done to help strengthen the country’s foreign relations and promote a cross-cultural exchange for the mutual betterment of Kuwait and its friendly countries. This is enacted through the Cultural Relations Department of Kuwait’s Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE).
For the in-bound fully funded scholarship in Kuwait, successful international candidates are set to have their full tuition fees covered for the universities of their choice. Moreover, scholars are given a set allowance every month to help offset living expenses and other precedented school-related costs, such as instructional materials or research costs. The scholarship may also provide two-way airfare, a travel preparation allowance, and student housing under certain conditions.
2. GUST Scholarship
The Gulf University for Science and Technology (GUST) is a private university in Kuwait that was established to promote scientific and technological progress for the Gulf region. It is no surprise GUST is among the select few Kuwaiti universities that offer one of the best scholarships available to international students so far.
GUST offers a limited number of internal scholarships each semester. These Kuwait scholarships provide partial to full tuition waivers for each scholar, amounting to 2,250 KWD maximum. This is valid for one term and may be renewed/reapplied for so long as you meet the minimum requirements to qualify for the university scholarship.
3. Kuwait Ministry of Private Education Scholarship (PUC)
Scholarships for Kuwaiti universities may also be applied through the Kuwait Ministry of Private Education (PUC). These are open to all recently graduated high school students (i.e., Kuwaiti, Non-Kuwaiti, and diploma graduates) who meet certain criteria set by the PUC. Successful candidates of this scholarship will have their tuition fees covered by the government from the time of awarding up to graduation. This scholarship may be applied to a handful of schools such as ACK and KILAW.
4. AUK Scholarship
The American University of Kuwait (AUK) is another well-connected private Kuwaiti university, this time one that specializes in the liberal arts. The AUK offers a university experience similar to the American style of higher education and true to its vision of becoming an internationally recognized university, provides a good set of scholarships to enable some of its stellar students’ continued academic journeys.
One of these Kuwait scholarships is the AUK Academic Scholarship, which waives tuition in partial or full for a whole semester of up to 15 credits according to merit. This is available to students who have studied in the AUK for at least four semesters (60 credits) with a GPA of 3.5.
Another AUK scholarship of note is the state-sponsored Minister’s Seats, which are given to two outstanding students every year via the MOHE. This will cover their tuition and miscellaneous fees in full until they graduate.
5. Arabic Language Program Scholarship at Kuwait University
The Embassy of Kuwait offers the Arabic Language Program Scholarships each year to citizens of select countries such as Indonesia. These courses are conducted at Kuwait University, which will host the selected international students during their stay. In this scholarship at Kuwait, the Government of Kuwait will fully cover and/or provide all expected program-related expenses of each scholar which include school fees, books, housing, and food.