Ambassador’s Remarks at National Union of Kuwaiti Students Orientation

Friday, July 31, 2015 8:30 p.m.

Ambassador’s Remarks for Pre-Departue Orientation for Kuwaiti Scholarship Students

I would like to welcome all of you and thank NUKS-USA for organizing this event.

I congratulate all of the students and families on your accomplishments and your choice to study in the United States.

I want to recognize His Excellency Dr. Bader Hamad Al-Essa, Minister of Education and Higher Education,

Under Secretary Dr. Hamed Al-Azmi, and for being here this evening, and for the continued very generous support of the Government of Kuwait and the Ministry of Higher Education for Kuwaiti students in the United States.

I am myself the father of a son who will be starting his university education in the United States in about three weeks.

So I know what you are feeling.

The United States and Kuwait enjoy a strong partnership.

Higher education is an important part of that relationship.

Each year, thousands of Kuwaiti students study in America.

More Kuwaiti students study in the USA than in any other country.

In fact, about 10% of Kuwaiti graduates from secondary school attend college in the U.S.

I want this number to grow.

Your study in the USA strengthens the relations between our two nations, not only now but also in the future.

You are beginning a memorable period of your lives.

There will be many new things: new friends, new opportunities, new adventures.

And, since this is the first time most of you will live away from home, there are also likely to be some challenges.

During challenging times, you must know that you are not alone.

There are many people to support you:

  • your families and friends,
  • your cultural office and NUKS,
  • your professors and advisors,
  • and the Kuwaiti student communities in many schools.

I urge you to look to these resources for assistance and support.

And you should always remember that your success is exactly that – YOUR success.

You will succeed at university in the United States because you go to class, you complete your assignments, you study for tests, and you remain a student in good standing.

You can do this all while enjoying American college life.

It will be an exciting time, but also a time to remember your personal responsibility to be a good student and a good citizen.

And let me be clear before you go:

If you engage in activities that would get you in trouble here at home, those activities will get you in trouble in the United States as well, and could affect your ability to return to the United States in the future

But deeper than that, remember that you are all ambassadors for Kuwait.

You will not only study but also educate the citizens of my country.

You will bring your language, your culture, your history, and your family stories to Americans who have never visited Kuwait or the Middle East.

For those of you who still have questions, our educational advisors, can give you information about different academic programs and schools in the United States.

Take advantage of our academic advising services at the Ministry of Higher Education and at the NUKS-USA office.

If you have not already done so, I also encourage you all to apply as soon as possible for your student visa.

My staff is here to answer any questions you or your families have about studies in the United States or the visa application process.

You should be proud of your success.

Five generations of Kuwaitis have studied in the United States.

We are very pleased to have all of you as part of that tradition, leading the sixth generation of Kuwaiti students in the United States.

al-salam w alaikum rehmet Allah w barakat oo