| Azlan Othman |
GERMANY is inviting more Bruneian students – private or under the Brunei Government scholarships – to pursue their studies there because it is relatively cheap.
Dr Guido Schnieders, Director of German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) based in Kuala Lumpur, said during an education seminar at Jerudong International School (JIS) that it is cheaper for Bruneians to pursue studies in Germany compared to the UK because they do not take tuition fees.
DAAD is an organisation set up by the German universities and financed by the state.
“It takes about 8,000 euro or $12,000 per year to support a student’s life in Germany. It’s quite a big difference when compared to Anglo Saxon countries,” he said. “Germany is a smaller player in the Brunei market because most prefer Anglo Saxon countries. However, it would be a good idea to diversify.
“Our higher institutions are non-profit. We do not have a target number of Bruneians going to study in Germany because we don’t have a business plan and we don’t take tuition fees. We don’t consider higher education a business, but for us, it is a partnership.”
Germany, he said, is a country strong at engineering especially in automative, chemical, mechanical and manufacturing engineering. Therefore, if Bruneians want to do their Masters and PhD programmes in Germany, there are many opportunities to do so in English while Bachelor’s Degree offers less courses in English.
He also highlighted his visit to Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) where he met some German scientists. “Brunei would be an interesting partner in the field of research with German universities on biodiversity, energy and climate studies. Germans can do research in the tropical forest here,” he said.
The Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in Brunei Darussalam, Roland Grafe, highlighted that there are currently over 20 Bruneian students taking engineering course at a technical university in Southern Germany – a public private partnership school affiliated with a German university.
On renewable energy, Roland Grafe said that Brunei has, together with Indonesia and the US, set up an energy research institute, with European Union (EU) subsidising the research and there is the connecting point with Germany.