China, Indonesia, Australia, Thailand, and Brunei are offering scholarships to Cambodian students, government officials, NGO staff and private sector employees to pursue master’s and doctoral degrees in the 2023-24 academic year, according to an April 17 announcement by the Ministry of Education, Youth, and Sport.

China will provide a number of scholarships under the MOFCOM Scholarship Programme. The scholarships, which cover accommodation, travel and other expenses, offer government officials the chance to pursue a range of Master’s degrees or doctorates.

The Non-Aligned Movement Scholarship 2023 has also been announced by Indonesia. Open to all, it provides for study at the Universitas Gadjah Mada in Yogyakarta.

Thailand also announced two Master’s degree scholarships under the “Boon Rawd Scholarship 2023” at Mae Fah Luang University in Chiang Rai province. The package includes tuition, dormitory rent, a stipend of 6,000 baht ($175) per month and health insurance.

Brunei is preparing to offer 12-month Public Policy and Management scholarships to Cambodian citizens of both genders for the academic year 2023-24 at the University of Brunei Darussalam.

The “Australia Awards Scholarship Intake 2024” for master’s and doctoral degrees has also been announced.

Candidates who are interested in any of these offers should send completed application forms to the Office of Scholarships and Internships of the education ministry’s Department of Cultural Relations and Scholarships.

Pech Bolen, director-general of Westline Education Group and president of the Education Services Federation of Cambodia, said the provision of scholarships from abroad is very significant.

He urged Cambodians to improve their chances of successfully applying for these scholarships by improving their general knowledge and strengthening their command of the English language.

“Studying overseas is hugely beneficial for students’ futures as well as for the country. Students who study abroad will gain different perspectives on daily life from other students and a deeper understanding of their area, particularly in economics and the development of those countries,” he added.

Heng Vanda, chairman of the board of the Cambodian Higher Education Association, also considered sending students to study abroad as crucial for promoting national economic growth, since such students will return with the necessary skills to help develop the nation.

“Whether they return and seek state or private employment, they will benefit Cambodia, as they will have experienced things that will make them a valuable human resource,” he said.