The U.S consul-general, Will Stevens, has said that the role of the U.S Mission in Nigeria is to facilitate and build connections between the United States and Nigeria and one of the best ways of achieving this is through educational exchange.
Stevens stated this while declaring open the 21st Annual EducationUSA College and Career Fairs in Abuja and Lagos last week, adding that “America remains a leading destination for international students as it offers students with an unrivalled educational experience, flexibility, and diversity.”
The career fair, organised by the U.S Mission, featured representatives from 25 universities and colleges from across the United States, with the September 13 Fair in Abuja and the September 15 Fair in Lagos being augmented by talks by U.S. experts and Nigerian U.S. university alumni on college admissions and student visa application processes.
The event, which was attended by thousands of students, revealed the tremendous and enduring interest in Nigeria for American higher education.
Speaking on the theme: ‘Exploring Opportunities Post-Pandemic,’ Stevens said “we are happy to provide Nigerian students who wish to study in the United States a unique opportunity to learn about the diversity of the programmes offered at various U.S. educational institutions.”
Meanwhile, two days earlier, in Abuja, the U.S deputy chief of Mission, David Green, greeted students, parents, teachers and all the 25 U.S university representatives, which included admissions officers from leading and diverse institutions such as Howard University, Drexel University, Pace University, University of Oregon, Iowa State University, and University of Tennessee.
In both cities, Counsellor of Public Affairs Adnan Siddiqi, U.S Mission EducationUSA advisers, and Nigerian alumni of the U.S universities joined the visiting U.S college admissions officers to speak about the benefits of American education and study abroad, and to answer questions about the college admissions process, standardised testing, financial aid, and scholarship opportunities.
Over the last two decades, EducationUSA College and Career Fairs have resulted in an increased number of highly qualified Nigerian applicants to U.S. institutions.
According to the mission “a total of 13,000 Nigerians are currently pursuing U.S graduate and undergraduate degrees across 1,000 U.S colleges and universities.
“Nigeria sends more students to U.S. colleges and universities than any other country in Africa and is the eleventh largest source country worldwide of international students to the United States.”