In its renewed efforts to reach out to students and youths in under served communities in Nigeria, the U.S. Mission on Friday opened a new EducationUSA Advising Centre in Calabar, Cross River State to offer accurate, unbiased, and comprehensive information about educational institutions in the United States, as well as guidance to prospective students on how best to access those opportunities.
Delivering keynote remarks during the opening ceremony, U.S. Mission Counselor for Public Affairs Aruna Amirthanayagam said the new EducationUSA Advising Center presents an opportunity for the youth in local communities in Cross River State and its environs to obtain a world-class education in the United States and then return home to contribute to Nigeria’s economic growth and development.
“We are very pleased to open an EducationUSA Advising Centre in Calabar. The centre offers a variety of free educational resources, including public information sessions, webinars, one-on-one, cohort advising, and hands-on support for completing the U.S. college and university application process,” Counselor Amirthanayagam said.
U.S. Consulate Public Affairs Officer, Stephen Ibelli, added that EducationUSA Advising Centres in Nigeria assist many determined and talented, low-income students in Nigeria who only require financial resources and access to information to better their educational future.
Ibelli noted that applications for the 2021/2022 EducationUSA Opportunity Funds Program will open on April 15 until May 31, 2021, adding that applicants are welcome from all the states in Nigeria.
“In 2021, 19 high achieving, low-income students from southern Nigeria received full scholarships totaling $2.17 million to attend American universities and colleges for the 2020/2021 academic session. This feat was made possible through the Opportunity Funds Program of our EducationUSA Advising Center, with support from Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited,” Ibelli added.
In his goodwill message, Cross River State Commissioner for Education, Dr. Godwin Amanke, expressed the readiness of the state government to partner with the U.S. Mission to expand access to the services of the new EducationUSA Advising Center.
According to the latest Institute of International Education Open Doors Report, Nigeria retained its top ranking as the number one source of African students studying in the United States. About 13,762 Nigerians study at more than 1,000 U.S. colleges and universities.
Over the last 21 years, the EducationUSA Advising Centers in Nigeria have directly contributed to an increase in the number of highly qualified Nigerian applicants to U.S. institutions.