In recent years, many Bhutanese including civil servants, corporate and private employees and unemployed youths have left abroad for further studies and to make a better living.
This phenomena is not confined to above sections of population but it has been observed that growing number of college students withdrawing in the mid of semester.
Last year, Gedu College of Business Studies (GCBS) has recorded highest number of students withdrawing from mid of the semester and leaving the college. A total of 85 students have left the college last year which includes 24 students from February to June and 61 students from July to December 2022.
Of the 85 students, 11 students have opt to study abroad and some students have left the college due to personal problems, medical ground and some of the students they have exhausted their quota with back papers.
Dawala, the Dean of Student Affairs of GCBS said, “The reason behind students withdrawing from the college could be based on national trend as abroad is solely for learning and earning opportunities”.
He also said, “I assume that there would be similar cases in the future of withdrawing the students but I cannot assure as the migration trend is very dynamic given the global scenario”.
Sonam Wangchuk, a former student of GCBS who had withdrawn from the college last year said that his first instinct was to go abroad and to pursue his studies in a country that has much better quality of education. Considering our country as a developing country, the quality of education system remain to be at par with its development status whereas, Australia being a developed country so is the education system there.
“To bring forward a better and practical implication of what I am interested in business aspect, I know that we do have college such as Royal Thimphu and Gedu Colleges but all these colleges focus more on theoretical knowledge whereby the implication of these knowledge seems quite contradictory and irrelevant to the real situation we have in our country,” he added.
He also said that from what I hear and practically see, many possess different reasons and analysis on youth leaving the college but when I asked my friends who have already left to Australia said universities in Australia has quite reasonable living cost and cost effective courses compared to other countries.
He further added that the main reason behind his opting to study abroad is that he have found many potential universities and opportunities that would be able to bring changes in the country and expand the scope of his career and learning independent from home which might make him understand the value of things that he didn’t see when he was in the former college.
Moreover, Sherubtse College has recorded 9 students who have left the college last year with medical issues and few students leaving abroad.
Tshering Wangdi, Sherubtse College President said, “There are no such rules and regulations for the students who are willing to withdraw from the college as they are allowed to withdraw from the college whenever they want but we make sure that payment has made for the particular semester for self-funding students before they withdraw”.
“We cannot verify on how many students have left for abroad as some of the students they state different reasons while they withdraw from the college”, he added.
Karma (name changed), a student from Sherubtse College said, “I had decided to withdraw from the college and opted to study abroad as I don’t see any opportunities in the future if I study here in the country and moreover, if I don’t get through Royal Civil Service Examination, I would have just wasted 3 years of my studying time”.
She said that her brother told her to sit for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and asked her to pursue her study at Perth in Australia. “We can work and earn as well as study and pay our own expenses which we cannot do in our country”, she added.
Tshering Wangchuk, a student of one of the colleges said, “I have appeared my IELTS last year and scored 8 in overall band. I am planning to withdraw from the college soon if I get my visa as I have done all my documentation and waiting for the visa”.
Similar, the dependent of Tshering Wangchuk said that she too will withdraw from the college if she gets her visa. “She decided to go as a dependent and work as she is the eldest from her family and have to look after her siblings”.
She also added that I don’t see any future scope with the course I am studying right now. So I have decided to withdraw from college and go abroad.
Similarly, one student from Paro College of Education had left the college last year to study abroad.
Meanwhile there are more than 12,500 Bhutanese living in Australia and 32,258 Bhutanese in 113 countries.
We tried to contact all the colleges of Bhutan but couldn’t get in contact as some of the faculties are on winter vacation and some they denied to give us the information.