First year Biomedical student Fawwaz, who is from Kuwait, was among 40 international students invited to Áras an Úachtaráin by the President.
Each student represented the university or institute of technology where they are studying. They have been blogging about their experiences as international students in Ireland for the last year.
The programme is managed by Enterprise Ireland, and is one of Ireland’s promotional efforts to raise awareness of Ireland as a centre for international education. The student ambassadors use social media to provide blogs, videos, tweets, podcasts and articles to their international peers, prospective students and families about student life in Ireland. The students represent a range of countries including the United States, China, India, Canada, Brazil and Kuwait.
Education in Ireland, the umbrella brand for promoting Irish higher education institutions in international markets, is actively targeting students in India, Brazil, the USA, China and the Middle East. Enterprise Ireland estimates that the international student sector is worth over €1 billion a year to the Irish economy.
Earlier in the day the students received certificates and met with the Minister for Education Ruari Quinn at the Department of Education and Skills.
Minister Quinn said: ‘“This outstanding group of young people from around the world are playing a crucial role in promoting Ireland as an education destination. Their tweets, blogs, posts and podcasts are reaching the student audiences we want to hear about Ireland.”
Caption for photo above: President Michael D. Higgins with IT Sligo student Fawwaz Al Shammari.