Canadian university to shut Dubai campus

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(Image for illustrative purposes)

(Image for illustrative purposes)

Canada’s University of Waterloo is to transfer students at its Dubai campus to its home base in Ontario to complete their studies following the announcement that the facility is to shut as a result of low enrolment levels.

“The decision will see approximately 80 students currently completing their first year in Dubai come to Canada one year early to complete the balance of their undergraduate degree. The decision also impacts approximately 12 faculty members and 10 staff,” Dr Jean-Jacques Van Vlasselaer, Associate Vice-President International (Interim) at University of Waterloo said in a statement.

“The cohort of students now in their second year of studies in Dubai will come to Waterloo as scheduled in September 2013 to complete the final two years of their undergraduate programs, while those enrolled in their first year in Dubai will complete their final three years on the main Waterloo campus,” the statement added.

The Dubai campus opened three years ago but has been shut after enrolment numbers fell short of expectations.

The Dubai school has 140 students - 80 in first year and 60 students in second year - but it needed at least 180 students, and was hoping for as many as 500, to make the programme viable, Sallie Keller, vice-president academic and provost, told the Ontario-based The Record newspaper.

Keller added plans for a campus in China and other international locations had now been put on hold.

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Posted by: Ex Montreal

Hold on, Waterloo is one of the most respectable names worldwide. They are not elitist. Bad marketing maybe due to bad local hiring practices which seems to be the case with some ventures in the UAE. The students knew they had to spend min 2 years at the Canada campus, now it'll be 3. I say best of luck to them I'm sure they will enjoy it. I personally believe in the half here half there approach. Best of both worlds and doesn't risk having a brand name bringing out subpar students (reference to NYIT Bahrain).

Posted by: Ahmed

It's one of the most respectable ones in Canada, hardly worldwide. Bad marketing is due to them being too cheap to hire an actual advertising agency, thinking their name alone will carry them through. Oops, I guess they weren't as well known as they thought they were. No wonder they are putting the China campus plans on hold, - back home they can coast on their name alone, but clearly they are not yet prepared for competition in a global economy.

Posted by: Ahmed

Wow, I know about Waterloo, but was completely unaware they had a Dubai campus until now!

Terrible terrible marketing...they should have invested money in marketing and advertising, even Wollongong has better visibility in Dubai across newspapers and radio.

I guess they were too "elite" to actually go out and sell themselves, typical Waterloo mentality.

This press release seems to be the only successful PR they did. FAIL.

Posted by: procan

Ahmed.... all is good, the bright students all 60 will be very welcome at the beautiful Waterloo Campus for three years of growing and learning about the opportunity the world has to offer threw a clear educated lens. They will be offered full time Canadian residence on a priority bases if the they so choose to, or return to there home and native lands after there studies. What we offer is fine respected education that will open any door Globally. It is sad to see the Dubai Campus close but the educating of these bright students will carry on and that and only that is what counts. So a big welcome to the Students from UAE come see what we have to offer.

Posted by: FERAS

Yet another commercial academic venture - well deserved treatment.

Posted by: ADJ

With all the millions of new residents coming in they couldn't attract 40 additional enrollments? Dubai property market is also booming again so everything must be back to normal now. This is so odd.

Posted by: procan

Cannot tell you how pleased I am to read Brian ,Zafar, and John comments.

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