US university loses $5m as Saudi students stay away

(Courtesy of Wikipedia)
Updated 04 August 2016
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US university loses $5m as Saudi students stay away

JEDDAH: The revenues of Idaho University are expected to decline by more than $5 million in the new academic year due to a drop in the number of Saudi scholarship students.
This decrease has been attributed to racist attacks suffered by some Saudi students at the university recently.
According to the Associated Press, the level of registration at the university is expected to decline by as much as seven percent next semester, in comparison to last semester.
The annual report of the university which was sent to all employees and the faculty members said that the number of registered students in the upcoming academic year will be less than 9,500 students.
Laura Woodworth-Ney, Idaho State University’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, explained that while the figures reflect the current period alone, the university is getting ready for a further drop in the number of students in the future.
She added that the reason for the declining revenues of the university was the declining number of the Saudi students in addition to Kuwaiti students.
This decreased enrollment at the institution comes after Idaho University witnessed a range of racist attacks on Saudi and Kuwaiti students, which prompted the Saudi Embassy in Washington to reconsider the scholarship program with the university.
The situation stabilized after the intervention of the mayor of the city and the rector of the university, enabling the parties to reach a suitable solution to the issue, with the university pledging to provide security for Gulf students by providing more police patrols around their lodgings.
In an email to Idaho State faculty and students in mid-April, the university’s president, Arthur C. Vailas, said the homes of about 50 Middle Eastern students had been burglarized over several weeks.
“As a result of these crimes, some of our students are seriously considering leaving I.S.U. and Pocatello,” the email said.
The burglaries followed reports that 17 vehicles, many belonging to Middle Eastern students, were vandalized last year, Vailas’s email said. Also, DVDs containing hate messages were left on a number of car windshields on campus.
Saudi and Kuwaiti students make up one-tenth of the population at Idaho State.


Makkah Route: Health services presented to Hajjis in their home countries

Updated 21 July 2019
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Makkah Route: Health services presented to Hajjis in their home countries

  • 257,981 pilgrims benefited from the "preventive services" since the new initiative’s launch

RIYADH: One of the services provided by the Makkah Route initiative, which aims to smooth the Hajj journey of pilgrims and provide top-quality service, is to ensure that all health requirements are met.

The Communication, Relations and Health Awareness General Department of the Ministry of Health is implementing the initiative in two ways. 

The first is to ensure that the proper application of the health requirements for Hajj and Umrah is followed in targeted countries before issuing the Kingdom’s entry visa (Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Tunisia). 

The second is to check that preventive measures are taken according to the world’s epidemiological situation, for instance in Pakistan.

“Preventive measures” mean, for example, providing polio vaccines for pilgrims. The vaccine, approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), is provided through the Pakistani health authorities at the departure area of the airport.

“The ministry is also deploying a team of five people qualified to supervise the application of health requirements and assess the vaccination procedure and the application of preventive measures,” the department added.   


HIGHLIGHTS

The Makkah Route initiative aims to ensure that the proper application of the health requirements for Hajj and Umrah is followed in targeted countries before issuing the Kingdom’s entry visa.

The initiative also ensures that preventive measures are taken according to the world’s epidemiological situation, for instance in Pakistan.

The workforce at the different land, air, and sea entry/exit points during this year’s Hajj season numbers more than 1,700 individuals.

The teams include 131 experienced doctors, general health specialists, epidemiological monitors, and other staff to provide the necessary treatment and preventive services to pilgrims.


The ministry’s procedures in the departure hall include prepping emergency clinics at the points where Makkah Route pilgrims are received. 

These clinics deal with urgent cases, prepare awareness information for pilgrims and coordinate with the General Authority of Civil Aviation regarding their distribution on the targeted airlines.

The workforce at the different land, air, and sea entry/exit points during this year’s Hajj season numbers more than 1,700 individuals, including 131 experienced doctors, general health specialists, epidemiological monitors, and other staff to provide the necessary treatment and preventive services to pilgrims.

The ministry stated that the number of health practitioners assigned to the service of pilgrims during Hajj “is more than 30,000.”

The ministry encourages volunteering during the Hajj season; it believes that it is a very important and noble service toward fellow citizens, nations and the religion, where Islam highly encourages volunteering and serving others.

The ministry is coordinating the major institutions and commissions via its Hajj volunteering link to register volunteers so that they can participate through the societal partnership program.

The missions affiliated with the pilgrim’s affairs offices provide basic treatment services and refer patients to the ministry’s health facilities, keeping an eye on the overall health situation and reporting any suspicious infectious diseases. 

The ministry monitors all the health institutions and medical missions affiliated with the pilgrim’s affairs offices to make sure the health requirements are being properly applied, to ensure pilgrims’ safety and guarantee an environment free of infectious diseases.

The Health Ministry has confirmed that so far that there has been no incidence of any epidemic diseases or quarantine cases recorded among pilgrims, who arrived and the health situation is reassuring.

Since the first of Dul Qaada, the ministry has provided preventive services, via access points, to 257,981 pilgrims, with a total rate of commitment to vaccination reached  87.4 percent for meningitis, 67.3 percent for yellow fever and 95.3 percent for polio.