A few months ago I did some research on this topic and got some valuable feedback on this issue. I am going to share my personal opinion and experience regarding the topic. I was born and raised in Saudi Arabia for the first 18 years of my life. After that my parents sent me abroad for post secondary education. Here I have met a few Saudis and heard a lot about them. From what I have seen and heard, it is not suitable to sent Saudis abroad for studies and there are some good reasons for it.

There is a generation gap between the younger generation and the older generation and the whole world has been affected by the change. However, this generation gap is very problematic in Saudi Arabia because of two reasons. First, the generation gap is very wide in Saudi Arabia as compared to other societies. Secondly, Saudi Arabia is a very conservative Islamic society which does not support the ideas of negative western minded individuals. Teenagers living in Saudi Arabia are like a volcano which wants to explode but cannot due to the enormous society pressure. It’s a good thing that the Saudi society is preventing the negativity to come out, but that is one main reason why Saudis are trying to escape the country. The youth doesn’t do anything besides playing soccer and watching Hollywood movies or Lebanese music videos which is a favorite past-time. Exposure to such media has intensified their sexual desires and influenced their hair styles, mentality and dress code as well (jeans below waist).

When they move to a western country for education or whatever reason, it’s like a bird in a cage being set free and able to do whatever it can. A senior employee in my college who personally knows some Saudi students, one of them being one of the 5000 Saudi royal princes, told me they never study in the first year of school. They are busy enjoying the luxuries and freedoms of a new place and experiencing things they never felt before. My friend who also lived in Saudi Arabia has some Saudi friends who are students and do not wish to go back to Saudi Arabia. They go to clubs, enjoy alcohol and have pleasure with women. A Saudi facebook friend of mine usually sometimes invites me to clubbing events through facebook. He even posted a picture of himself with some girls in a club while he was wearing a t-shirt which said Saudi Arabia. Some Saudis are also involved in physical relations with prostitutes if they are not able to find a girl friend.

There is a reason why the Saudi government implemented the orientation program for Saudis who are about to leave to other countries for education. The ability to see women in every kind of dress and misbehaving is a frequent occurrence. A Saudi student in America was arrested for child molestation as he was about to meet an underage girl who he found online and was about to have physical relations with. He took an air flight to visit her city and was arrested at the airport. Most of the students in the west are on scholarships and do not feel the pain when they do not get appropriate grades.

Nobody can stop anybody from going anywhere. If they want to go abroad let it be. Everybody should have the freedom to choose where they want to go and what they want to do. However, the Saudi government should not encourage scholarship programs and send them elsewhere. The best thing to do would be to have good universities in your own country and encourage students to study locally.

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10 thoughts on “Should Saudis Travel To West

  1. I couldn’t have said it any better, Masha Allah! You did a great job here, you should start writing more articles.

    I wonder what will become of Saudi when these Western educated individuals return. The Future doesn’t look good for Saudi, if the next generation is getting their education from the West. I don’t think they will benefit Saudi at all. This could be the downfall of Saudi Arabia -which is already happening. I notice a majority of Saudis who have been educated in the west or have some type of obsession with western culture are the main cause of the problems in Saudi.

  2. Hey mate, thanks for your comment. Although I think what you said is mostly true, we cannot have a stereotype over all Saudi abroad students. I know of some Saudis that go to colleges like Harvard and Princeton – they’re hard-working and ambitious, and they will definitely serve the country when they come back. I think that in order for the Saudi society to be reformed, we need its people to be exposed to different worlds and culture. I agree that students sent out might be greeted with “sudden freedom,’ and that they might not react very subtly to it, but that doesn’t mean that we should stop sending out students outside. It means that we should better prepare them for what’s going out there. In fact, we need outstanding Saudis to get proper education and be exposed to different cultures so they would be more open minded – those people would truly benefit our country.
    It’s sad that what you’ve mentioned is true for many Saudis… but we should also remember that there are many many others who do not behave that way.
    Nice topic.

  3. Thank you for the interesting comment. You are right when yoy say Saudis should be educated, reformed and open-minded. But sending them abroad is not the only way to do that. Countries like America, England and Germany did not prosper by sending their students abroad for education. They educated their own people themselves by setting up their own education system and creating their own universities. Instead of learning from this example, the other nations are just depending on them.

    KAUST is a good example of a new change. We need many more institutions which can offer Saudi students which any university in the west can offer.

  4. I just want to add that sending them abroad in a non-muslim environment is not helpful or of benefit to Saudis. I have to agree with ADNISA and say that they’ll be best served in Saudi, at least they will be in an islamic environment and not easily influenced by things which are not of benefit to their deen.

    These individuals may come back with an education from Harvard , Princton or Yale, but they are totally screwed in the head. They are ingrained with western believes, culture, they gain the same mentality as non-muslims, so how could that benefit Saudi and future generations? It can only harm Saudi because now you have these same individual who are dissatisfied when they return and want to reform things to meet western standards when we already have a clear path to follow. This is another reason why ALL of the muslim countries are in the situation they’re in or at least heading that way, because Allah said, He will not change the condition of a people until they return to their religion and that includes stop trying to reform (Islam)it will not bring Muslims ANY good in this life and definitely not in the Hereafter.

  5. Pingback: Should Saudis Travel To West – A Saudi Woman’s Perspective « Association For Discussion Of National Issues Of Saudi Arabia

  6. Mash Allah ,all Saudis should stay in their homeland and develop their religious sides. They should not bother with western concepts and science. the Koran is enough.

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