As you may know we talk to students from around the world who are pursuing their higher education,  I get the goose pumps when I hear them talk about what they want to do and their aspirations.   Almost every student from UAE for example wants to go to a top ranked university! we help them of course if their grades and other achievements permits, if not we place them in the place that suits them and suits their abilities.  Of course we do that without prejudice and without putting the students down,  as the last thing one wants to do is to hamper their enthusiasm when he or she are at the peak of their hope and dreams of the future. 
Off late we have been helping students from bahrain and needless to say that almost all of the ones that come our way are those that had attained the highest grades.  I am baffled by how subdued they are and how they never think beyond Bahrain and other gulf countries.  Most of the times they are baffled too about the possibilities available out there.

Being the inquisitive me I ask why? why are they asking for this or that university and what their parents think? and have they checked around? or are they told of what is available out there?

So my latest discussion made me go mad.  This student gained 97.8% in her high school last year. She was offered a scholarship to a gulf country when she wanted another gulf country.  So she went for a term, decided that she doesn’t like it and returned back to Bahrain.  Then someone gave her my number (to her fortune or misfortune, not sure).   Of  course I went through the drill and asked her why does she only wants that particular university? I asked her to check the various rankings to show me if its in them?

I was only trying to tell her that a high ranking student should go to a high ranking university.  With her grades even Harvard will accept her and would even give her a scholarship.   In Turkey for example (and by the way, no one from the Gulf region wants to go there yet!) most of their universities are in the top. But us the Bahraini people always settle for the closest.  Unsure why?  I think a student should insist that he/she must go to the top university even if its in China.  This is according to our prophet

I am sorry but I lose my mind especially that the UAE who started their schools years after Bahrain are sending their students to the best places and we the Bahraini people think of the worst and that too if the family permits.

We can’t afford it, My dream is to study in the UK, my family will not agree, I don’t have the language level required, I cannot see myself there, what if I apply and they don’t accept me? what if after what if, endless hampering of ones ability, which seriously reflects of the country itself.

So my answer to these students, what if you get a scholarship?  did you think of that?
I also give them this website: and ask them to go there and see for themselves the endless possibilities.

The education system in every country has a a very important side that goes beyond, reading, writing,  arithmetic!  its compounding the confidence of the learners, making them believe in themselves and letting them unleash their potential to show the world that they firstly exist and secondly can. anyone given the right circumstances can do the best, and pupil in bahrain are no different.  I can only say that the students had lost their ambition, they must feel that there is no point of working hard, as their country had lost its soul.


Suad Alhalwachi

Director of Education Zone