Scholarship: PTDF receives over 25,000 applications to study abroad

Posted by News Express | 17 March 2020 | 1,254 times

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Over 25,000 individuals applied to study abroad under Overseas Scholarship Programme for the 2020/2021 academic year, the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, PTDF, has said.

Malam Bello Mustapha, Head of the Overseas Scholarship Scheme of the PTDF, gave the hint on Monday during the flag-off of the screening and interview of candidates for the masters’ category, in the 2020/2021 programme in Abuja.

Mustapha stated that out of the 25,000 applications, it was able to shortlist over 6,000 candidates spread across the six geo-political zones of the country.

He explained that the screening and interview of the candidates, which would take place across the six geo-political zones would further prune down of the applicants to a pre-determined number from each of the six zones of the country, including the Federal Capital Territory.

Mustapha noted that the screening and interview exercise would span a two weeks period in all the zones, explaining that former scholars of the programme had been engaged to undertake the screening and interview of the applicants.

He added that in addition to the existing countries —France, Germany, China, and the United Kingdom, UK — the PTDF had extended the foreign scholarship programme to Malaysia, due to with its recent signing of a strategic agreement with the University of Technology Petronas in Malaysia.

Mustapha allayed fears that the rising cases of the Coronavirus pandemic would negatively impact the programme, noting that the programme was scheduled to commence in September, when, according to him, the virus would have been curtailed.

However, he stated that if the Coronavirus pandemic was not curtailed by September, the PTDF would take proactive measures to ensure that the progarmme and its scholars were not affected by the disease.

He said, “The session commences in September, I do not know if the problem would be tackled before then. If it is not tackled, then we might take some proactive measures to ensure it does not affect the programme.”

Mustaph added that the screening and interview of candidates for the 2020/2021 Doctor of Philosophy, PhD, Overseas Scholarship Scheme would be conducted next week, noting that some former scholars would also be engaged to interview the PhD candidates.

He said, “We received over 25,000 candidates and we shortlisted over 6,000, but spread across the six geo-political zones of the country where the interviews would take place.

“For interview and screening, we normally use 90 per cent of our old scholars that had graduated from PhD; the ones that performed excellently ones among them, they are the ones that would conduct the interview.

“The panelists are up to 91 and they are spread across the six geo-political zones of the country. The number of candidates we have in each zone determines the number of days we would spend interviewing the candidates.

“The overseas scholarship scheme is almost the same thing with the previous ones, only that this time, since this year, we extended it to Malaysia, because we have forged a new partnership with a university there. It is called University of Technology Petronas. That is just the new strategic partnership that we have added for this year.” (Independent)

Source: News Express

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