The first Saudi Arabian scholarship students in 1927 went to nearby countries and focused only on Bachelor’s degrees in Arabic and Islamic studies. Today more than 100,000 Saudi scholars have come to the United States alone. Others travel to Poland, The Netherlands, Singapore, and 18 other countries. The tide turned when then-Crown Prince Abdullah met with President Bush in 2005, and authorized by royal decree the funding of thousands of students over the next five years. Incredibly successful, the King Abdullah Scholarship Program was renewed for another five years.
Scholarship students must meet strict academic requirements and host institutions must provide accredited curriculum in specified fields for undergraduate, post-graduate, and doctoral study. A.C.E. is honored to host Saudi scholars at all four of our locations, including students with conditional admission at our two newest A.C.E. Language Institutes at the University of Rhode Island (URI) and Saint Francis University (SFU).
On June 12-13, 2012, Shirley Henderson, A.C.E. Enrollment Services Director, and Brother Shamus McGrenra, Director of International Admissions and Student Services at SFU, visited three embassies in Washington, D.C. and met representatives of the cultural attaches from Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Also traveling with them was one of the first Saudi students to attend SFU, Hasna Altamimi, sharing her experience studying in Loretto, Pennsylvania.
The following week, June 19-20, representatives from the A.C.E. Language Institute at the University of Rhode Island visited as well. Kimberly Sizelove, Director of A.C.E. at URI, and Nancy Stricklin, URI Assistant to the Provost for Global Strategies and Academic Partnerships, presented updates as Saudi students there have just finished the spring program and A.C.E. gears up for the fall semester.
A.C.E. appreciates the ongoing partnership with the cultural missions and welcomes students from all nationalities in our programs.