Welcome to Education City, the place where education, science, research and entertainment meet. The pedagogic city brings together six top American universities: Carnegie Mellon University, Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, Texas A&M University, Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar and Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar and Northwestern University being the most recent additions.
It is the vision of the Emir Shaikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani and Shaikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al Misnad, to take higher education to new heights by making Qatar a regional educational hub, where Qataris benefit from the best education and at the same time preserve their traditions and values.
Not so long ago Qatar Foundation's Education City hosted an inaugural senior convocation ceremony to celebrate the graduation of 122 graduates comprising 67 Qataris and 55 international students representing 18 nationalities. These students are graduating from four university campuses: Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar, as well as the seventh graduating class of the Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Qatar.
Maha Adheir, an interior design graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, said, "Qatar is growing and its identity is changing with it. I would like to use my degree to develop a uniquely Qatari identity in the field of interior design."
Yousuf Murad, a chemical engineering student at Texas A&M University at Qatar tells how his education has shaped his career ambitions. He said, "I realised right from the beginning of my college life that my career would be helped by developing an interest in research. Looking at the opportunities available at the Qatar Science and Technology Park, I believe it represents a unique opportunity in that it seeks to export knowledge, not import it."
"The graduates of the Education City branch campuses have all gained prestigious qualifications within their respective specialisations, which will equip them for very promising career paths. Moreover, they have done this in the context of a high quality academic environment of learning and a full-fledged intellectual and social campus life that has made them confident, highly skilled and motivated individuals who will also succeed in their social and personal lives," said Dr Fathy Saoud, President of the Qatar Foundation.
Admissions, scholarships and education
The universities employ some of the same professors and provide the same education as their mother campuses and charge the same tuition fees. Part of the future plan is to include post-graduate courses and programmes. All these universities offer scholarships, sponsorships, financial aid and financial loans to full tuition fees for the academic years. These are designed to help students get into these universities.
The universities select students who meet the academic and admission requirements of the university.
The universities are fully equipped with the latest technology, resources, science and research departments.
Home away from home
Students feel that they have been given the opportunity to study at American universities, receive good quality education, mingle with students of different backgrounds and cultures while staying home and close to their families. They will graduate to be Qatar's future doctors, engineers and skilled professionals.
Some of the programmes available
Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar
The first medical school in Qatar, it offers an integrated programme, pre-medical and medical studies leading to the university's medical degree. Teaching is by Cornell and Weill Cornell faculty, including physicians at Hamad Medical Corporation, who hold the university's appointments.
- website: www.qatar-med.cornell.edu
Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar
- Interior design
- Graphic design
- website: www.qatar.vcu.edu
Texas A&M University in Qatar
- Chemical engineering
- Electrical engineering
- Mechanical engineering
- Petroleum engineering
- website: www.qatar.tamu.edu
Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar
- Public relations
- website: www1.georgetown.edu/sfs/qatar
Northwestern University in Qatar
- Coming soon, the university will offer courses in media.
- website: www.qatar.northwestern.edu
Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar
- Business administration
- Computer science
- Information systems
- website: www.qatar.cmu.edu
Qatar foundation to establish Music Academy
- The academy will open in Cultural Village;
- It will be supported by the new Qatar Symphony Orchestra;
- 101-member orchestra drawn from 31 nations will be in Doha;
- The Music Academy will eventually be based in Education City
What students said about
"I am so excited that I have graduated, and I am very proud to graduate from this university. That is why I was a bit sad that I am leaving the university after all these years. We have all become one family.
"Our vision here is to change the world. At first I will work in a bank to pay off my university sponsorship and then I am planning to open my own business.
"I am interested in doing charity work and I have done so during my university years - with a group of students we formed a club."
- Nour Maher Al Athirah, business administration, Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar
"I am so happy I have graduated. University life was very nice in every way. I might work in a bank right now and later on I will explore my options and see what opportunities I get.
- Mohammad Al Mahmadi Hamad, business administration, Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar
"I will join HSBC bank to work as a banker . I came to Qatar because of my parents, but I really have enjoyed my life here and have learned a lot from studying in such a reputable university.
I have visited the university's mother campus in Pittsburgh."
- Yasmin Abdul Rahman, business administration, Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar
"I have been living here in Qatar for so long. Now I have opened my own company in the UAE. The company sells online books with emphasis on Arabic books.
"I have always wanted to be raised in an Arab country. I have received western education in an Arabic culture, which is the best combination."- Jinan Tabra, business, Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar
"I always wanted to go to medical school, but before it was a bit hard to get into this programme. Now we are the first class to graduate from an American university that teaches medicine outside the US. It was hard for me to balance education and social life, especially since I was studying pre-medicine.
"It was so great for me because I have graduated from a very high ranking university and had the full experience, yet at the same time I was close to my family, culture and my own life. This was the best combination ever."
"I might stay one year in Doha and then go abroad, but at the end I will settle in my own country and practise medicine in Qatar."
- Khalid Al Khelaifi, MD, Weill Cornell College in Qatar