NYU Abu Dhabi has announced the 2015-2016 class of the Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars Programme, which recognises outstanding undergraduate students in the United Arab Emirates and provides them with specialised academic and leadership opportunities.
The Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars Programme, SMSP, established in 2008 by NYU Abu Dhabi in conjunction with the Abu Dhabi Education Council, ADEC, draws on high-achieving students in their third and fourth years of study in the UAE's three federal universities – United Arab Emirates University, UAEU, Zayed University, ZU, and the Higher Colleges of Technology, HCT, – and aims to further prepare them for success in graduate and professional study.
Sixty students were nominated by the three institutions to be considered for the Scholars programme. Following a rigorous selection and interview process, 24 were selected as Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars by a distinguished panel of judges from NYU Abu Dhabi, NYU New York, and the local Abu Dhabi community.
The 2015-2016 Scholars will select one of two political science classes, one on religion and government, taught by NYU President John Sexton, and the other on U.S. foreign policy, taught by noted journalist James Traub. In addition, all Scholars are trained in leadership development, public speaking and public presentations, and critical thinking and writing. During the year, the programme will travel to the U.S. to visit government sites in Washington, D.C., and hold classes at the Washington Square campus in New York while also touring cultural attractions in the cities.
Sheikha Maryam bint Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, co-chair of the SMSP steering committee, said, "The Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars Programme recognises exceptional Emirati students who are genuinely motivated by challenging educational and leadership development opportunities. I congratulate the students in this year's class, who will no doubt continue in the tradition of past Scholars by succeeding in their higher education training and excelling in an increasingly globalised and competitive world."
Diane C. Yu, SMSP Executive Director and Deputy President of NYU said, "We are delighted that these exceptional men and women will be part of this new class of Scholars. They represent the very best qualities of academic achievement, intellectual curiosity, leadership potential, creativity, skills, and accomplishments among the top university students in the UAE. They are a diverse and dynamic group, and we hope they will benefit greatly from what they will learn and experience through the programme."