Turkey’s Ministry of Education to stop sending grad students to the US

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The Turkish Ministry of Education will no longer grant scholarships to students pursuing graduate studies at US universities, the Yeni Şafak daily reported on Thursday based on the remarks of Deputy Minister Mustafa Safran.

Speaking at a meeting held on the occasion of an assessment report by an educators union, Safran revealed that in compliance with Turkey’s foreign policy, students will no longer be supported by the ministry for their master’s and doctoral studies in the US and that universities in European and Far East countries will be favored instead.

In addition Safran pointed out that it costs Turkey $35 million to fund graduate studies in the US.

“We do not consider it to be a reasonable amount, and the students do not make progress that corresponds to it. Graduate studies are usually combined together there, in which master’s programs are tremendously simple and only doctoral programs are a little strict,” Safran claimed.

Safran added that they are unable to find any logical explanation for students’ preference for American universities for their graduate studies.

“We know the quality of European universities. Plus, they don’t require tuition. From now on, we will direct our students to European and Far Eastern universities in line with Turkey’s interests. I believe this will prove to be fruitful both economically and in terms of our children retaining their cultural identity,” Safran said.

On the other hand, Safran said that with the exception of specific areas, students would not be granted scholarships for master’s studies in any foreign country.

“Turkey cannot afford to pour its money into other countries. We will no longer send students abroad for master’s degrees in fields such as education, business administration, communications and engineering. Our students will henceforth obtain their master’s degrees in these areas at our best universities and later will go on to pursue doctorates abroad,” Safran said.

Safran claimed that thanks to their new policy, taking into account only the cutbacks from the US, Turkey would save $20 million.

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