UNIVER, an online platform for international students focused on the Middle East and North Africa, will be running a virtual recruitment fair from April 19-21 in the face of the increasing difficulty of doing in-person recruitment.

“We are at the peak of the 2020 recruitment cycle… universities are facing stark challenges”

Students will be able to join online chats and video conferences, including with Unibuddy student ambassadors and student accommodation providers Unilodgers, to learn more about courses abroad.

“One of the biggest impacts of the coronavirus here in MENA is on the student recruitment process,” said UNIVER COO Amanda Gregory, who is based in Bahrain.

“We are at the peak of the 2020 recruitment cycle and with the cancellation of multiple events, many due to government restrictions, including school visits all across the region, universities in the region and globally are facing stark challenges.

“We recognise the long-term impact that the current crisis is going to have on international student recruitment and the commercial reality of not being able to deliver yearly marketing plans.

“As we are on the ground in the region, we are effectively able to keep the communication channel open and deliver the targeted numbers of applications without recruiters having to even leave their desks,” Gregory added.

Meanwhile in North America, virtual tours have been in use for years to allow international students to view campuses abroad but are now being offered to domestic students too. Unibuddy recently announced it is partnering with more than 80 colleges and universities in the US to help host college tours.

Universities will be able to host virtual events and chats with prospective students through the platform.

“When I was younger, it wasn’t practical to visit most colleges,” said Unibuddy CEO, Diego Fanara.

I know what it’s like for today’s students; a huge decision to be made with only websites and brochures. I created this tool to help students connect directly with each other to talk about what it’s really like to attend a particular institution.

“It’s critical now more than ever to partner with these institutions to better reach and serve prospective students – even in a world of social isolation and quarantines,” he added.

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