Press Release

NYU Abu Dhabi has announced the 2009-10 class of the Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars Program, which recognizes outstanding students in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and provides them with special academic and leadership opportunities.

The Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars Program, established by NYU Abu Dhabi in conjunction with the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), draws on students in their third and fourth years of study in the UAE’s national institutions of higher learning -- United Arab Emirates University (UAEU), Zayed University (ZU), and the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT). Some 43 students were nominated by the three institutions to be considered for the Scholars program. Of these, 32 were selected as finalists and were interviewed, and 20 were selected as Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Scholars by a distinguished panel of judges from NYU Abu Dhabi and NYU New York.

The 2009-10 scholars will take either one of two special classes, one on religion and government, taught by NYU President John Sexton, and the other focusing on US presidential politics and foreign policy, co-taught by Robert Shrum, the veteran political strategist and senior fellow at NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, and James Traub, the noted journalist who is currently a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, and member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Her Highness Sheikha Mariam bint Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, co-chair of the Scholars Program Steering Committee, said, "The Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed University Scholars Program recognizes promising UAE National students and provides them with unparalleled educational and leadership development opportunities. The students awarded scholarships for this year should be very proud of their achievements, and I'm sure they will enjoy the scholarship program as much as the inaugural class did in 2008-09."

In addition to their course in Abu Dhabi, the scholars will:

Participate in special English language training and a leadership development course
Attend enrichment programs
Travel to the U.S. to visit the Supreme Court and other significant locations in Washington, D.C., as well as to NYU’s Washington Square Campus in New York
Attend selected programs, lectures, and conferences sponsored by the NYU Abu Dhabi Institute, and meet and converse with noteworthy leaders

Diane C. Yu, executive director of the scholars program and the chief of staff and deputy to President Sexton, said: "We are delighted that these exceptional men and women will be part of the second class of scholars. They represent the very best qualities of academic achievement, intellectual curiosity, leadership potential, creativity, skills, and accomplishments among the top university students in the UAE.  They are a diverse and dynamic group, and we hope they will benefit greatly from what they will learn and experience through the program."

Vice Chancellor of NYU Abu Dhabi, Alfred Bloom, said: "I am so very appreciative of the contributions that these remarkable students will be making to the intellectual life of NYU Abu Dhabi and to deepening the connections between NYU and the UAE that are so critically important to the long-term success of our shared enterprise."