The Polish Educational Mission to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, which ended last week, opened new opportunities for Polish universities to enter into bilateral and multilateral cooperation with higher education institutions in Central Asia. The Mission was able to organise two round tables and two fair events which promoted studying in Poland. The entire event was organised by NAWA in close partnership with the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Tashkent.

The Mission began on 26 April 2019 in Tashkent, the capital city of Uzbekistan, where 31 Polish and 29 Uzbek universities met at a round table. The meeting was an opportunity to present the Polish system of tertiary education and NAWA’s services. Moreover, representatives of all the gathered institutions could exchange information about each other. The talks and new contacts will certainly bear fruits in the future. The next day of the Mission featured the first in history exclusively Polish education fair in Tashkent. Each Polish institution present at the event had a specifically prepared stand with its individual promotional banner. Since it was the first time we organised a fair in this form, we could not predict how many visitors to expect. Yet the promotion of the Polish fair in Uzbekistan yielded great results and the event was visited by as many as approximately 5,000 people in the course of six hours. The candidates were highly interested in the Polish offer, which was evidenced by specific questions on the university programmes as well as on the conditions of living and studying in Poland. The opening of the fair was attended by the deputy prime minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan, which was another sign for the friendliness with which the hosts welcomed the Polish delegation. The Mission’s final day in Uzbekistan was devoted to individual bilateral meetings as well as visits to the universities who had been present at the round table.

A part of the Polish delegation went directly from Uzbekistan to the neighbouring Tajikistan. There, in the capital city Dushanbe, an educational fair dedicated exclusively to Polish institutions was held. Again, the event gathered thousands of candidates interested in studying in Poland, and the presence of Tajikistan’s deputy prime minister only confirmed the significance of and recognition for the event. Similarly as in Tashkent, the last day featured a round table, which was attended by around 30 higher education institutions from Poland (15) and Tajikistan (approx. 15). After the conclusion of the meeting sessions and the networking event, local institutions invited the Polish delegates to visit their campuses. The meeting was thus also an opportunity to see the didactic and research facilities at Tajikistani universities.

The Uzbek educational market develops very dynamically and has interesting perspectives. Last year, 675 thousand candidates took exams to apply for almost 70 thousand places at tertiary education institutions (including only about 18 thousand places free of charge in entire Uzbekistan). The number of Uzbek students in Poland amounted to 152 in 2014 and to 367 in 2017. The number of Tajikistani students, on the other hand, amounted to 83 in 2014 and 200 in 2017. This data shows how rapidly the number of students from the region is growing and how immense the interest in Poland is. We are convinced that the current measures will intensify the cooperation between our countries in the area of tertiary education and research.

Participants of the Polish Educational Mission to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan 2019 were:

  1. Polish National Agency for Academic Exchange NAWA
  2. Conference of Rectors of Academic Schools in Poland
  3. Study in Lublin
  4. Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań
  5. University of Opole
  6. University of Silesia in Katowice
  7. University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn
  8. Gdańsk University of Technology
  9. Cracow University of Technology
  10. Lublin University of Technology
  11. Poznan University of Technology
  12. Warsaw University of Technology
  13. Polish-Japanese Academy of Information Technology in Warsaw
  14. AGH University of Science and Technology in Krakow
  15. University of Life Sciences in Lublin
  16. Poznań University of Life Sciences
  17. University of Agriculture in Krakow
  18. Vincent Pol University in Lublin
  19. Graduate School for Social Research (GSSR) of the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences
  20. SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw
  21. Samuel Bogumił Linde College of Modern Languages in Poznań
  22. Poznań University of Economics and Business
  23. Collegium Da Vinci in Poznań
  24. Collegium Civitas in Warsaw
  25. WSB University in Poznań
  26. Lazarski University in Warsaw
  27. Kozmiński University in Warsaw
  28. WSB University in Dąbrowa Górnicza
  29. University of Humanities and Economics in Lodz
  30. University College of Enterprise and Administration in Lublin
  31. The Lane Kirkland Scholarship Program