Education in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia had a very powerful start. The competent officials, led by Prince Fahd Ibn Abdel Aziz, always bore in mind the need to overcome difficulties and obstacles in order to attain the noble goals set by King Saud. Perhaps the most conspicuous of these obstacles and difficulties was the shortage in qualified Saudi teachers at all educational stages, especially higher education, despite the fact that the Pre-Scholarship School, which had been established, had dispatched many Saudi students on scholarships to the Arab countries, especially Egypt, for higher studies. However, on their return they only filled part of the gap.

To overcome that deficiency, it was necessary to bring in qualified personnel from Arab countries, offering them lucrative remuneration to intensify their effort. The Ministry of Education had drawn up plans for the expansion of education, especially institutes and universities.

However, the Ministry, as it proceeded energetically with its plans, realized that total and continued dependence on non-Saudi cadres meant that there was a flaw in the teaching process.

For that reason, the Ministry dispatched a group of Saudi students to the advanced countries for post-graduate studies (M.A. and Ph.D.) to return to their country, armed with knowledge, and participate with their brothers in that vital stage of the educational process, and also to take up higher posts, especially at university level. These scholarships were not limited to the Arab East, but also extended to universities in Europe and America, so that the students could select courses - not available at Saudi universities - according to certain criteria, especially the country's need for such specializations.

It was inevitable that the Ministry of Education - having increased the number of academic scholarships to Arab, European and American universities and having established cultural relations with Arab and Western countries - to create a Department for Scholarships Abroad in 1373 H. The main task of the Department was to supervise the affairs of scholarship students abroad, i.e. offer assistance; study their financial and academic conditions; and guide them according to the general interests and actual needs of their country.

Despite the fact that these tasks and duties were entrusted to the Department for Scholarships Abroad, King Saud personally followed the progress of his sons abroad and solved any difficulties they faced. During his official and unofficial visits to countries where his sons were studying, he would meet them and inquire about their studies. The financial resources allocated to these students were far greater than those offered by any other country to its students. This, no doubt, was a noble tradition still maintained by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to this day. 



  1. ^ KING SAUD BIN ABDULAZIZ AL SAUD MONARCH OF THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA / 1373 H (1953) - 1384 H (1964) By : Dr. Saleh Aoun-Hashem Al-Ghamdi