President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has announced that the government’s commitment to higher education and training has led to a significant investment of over USD 64.8 million. This funding has enabled 2,000 students to pursue their educational aspirations. President Solih made this announcement during the prestigious award ceremony for the President’s Scholarship and High Achievers’ Scholarship, which recognized the outstanding performance of students in the 2022 General Certificate of Education (GCE) Advanced Level examinations.
During his speech at the ceremony, President Solih emphasized the government’s efforts in providing Maldivians with ample opportunities for higher education in their desired fields, particularly overseas—a significant departure from the past. He highlighted the introduction of a free degree program in 2019, which has immensely benefited over 17,000 students. The program, which has received USD 35.7 million in funding, has already witnessed the graduation of over 6,500 students. Furthermore, President Solih announced an increase in the number of loan opportunities provided to 1,986 students.
The government has also taken substantial steps to alleviate the financial burden on students. It has reduced the interest rate on student loans from 5% to 1% and extended the repayment period to a more manageable 20 years. Additionally, a total of 418 students are currently pursuing their studies at the state’s expense, supported by scholarships from 25 partner countries. These figures do not include those benefiting from the free degree program or the student loan schemes. The government has already invested USD 16.7 million in scholarships thus far.
The government’s remarkable investments in education demonstrate its unwavering commitment to empowering the nation’s youth. By expanding access to higher education, providing financial support, and forging international partnerships, the government is laying the foundation for a brighter future. These efforts will undoubtedly contribute to the development and progress of the Maldives, fostering a highly skilled and educated workforce that can drive innovation and prosperity for years to come.