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### Attracting International Students: Ireland’s Robust Talent and Innovation Strategy

Ireland has been attracting Indian students, with the numbers increasing significantly due to expanding research and job opportunities. Irish educational institutions maintain connections with over 30 universities in India, fostering academic collaborations, faculty exchanges, and research partnerships in various fields such as engineering, law, social sciences, computer science, and hospitality. Kevin Kelly, the Ireland Ambassador to India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives, acknowledges the growing presence of Indian students in Ireland. Here are some insights from the interview:

What strategies has Ireland implemented to enhance the Study in Ireland program? With over 8000 Indian students currently enrolled in Irish universities, are there plans to further increase this number?

Ireland has a well-established reputation for academic excellence and research initiatives, making it an increasingly popular choice for international students over the past decade. Each year, numerous talented Indian students opt to pursue their undergraduate and postgraduate studies in Ireland, with many subsequently exploring job opportunities in various sectors within Ireland and beyond. Education in Ireland, a national brand under the Ministry of Education and Skills, plays a pivotal role in promoting Irish higher education institutions in India. They actively collaborate with Indian educational establishments, facilitate partnerships, raise awareness about Ireland as a study destination through events, online platforms, and media outreach.

Irish higher education institutions offer a diverse range of 5000+ programs leading to globally recognized and quality-assured qualifications, producing graduates who are highly skilled and competitive on a global scale. Ireland aims to provide opportunities to a broad spectrum of Indian students, with universities and departments tailoring their offerings to accommodate different needs and capacities.

Given the presence of numerous Irish companies establishing offices in India, how will this benefit Indian job seekers?

Currently, over 75 Irish companies have established offices in India, primarily focusing on recruiting locally to meet specific job requirements within the Indian market and various industries.

As Ireland aims to strengthen its economic and cultural ties through the Asia Pacific strategy, how will this initiative enhance academic partnerships?

The longstanding bilateral relations between India and Ireland are characterized by deep historical ties and extensive people-to-people connections. Regarding academic collaborations, Irish institutions maintain active partnerships with more than 30 universities in India, fostering academic cooperation, faculty exchanges, and joint research endeavors in disciplines such as engineering, law, social sciences, computer science, and hospitality.

Furthermore, Ireland’s recently launched Global Citizens 2030 – Ireland’s Talent and Innovation Strategy underscores the country’s commitment to nurturing academic relationships and prioritizing the educational experiences of international students in Ireland. This strategy aims to solidify Ireland’s position as a preferred destination for learners, researchers, and innovators from India and other regions.

How have academic relations between India and Ireland evolved over the past decade?

In the last ten years, the number of Indian students choosing to study in Ireland has surged from a few hundred to over 7000 in 2022. Approximately 14 Irish higher education institutions have established local offices in key Indian cities such as New Delhi, Mumbai, and Hyderabad. Irish universities and colleges continue to strengthen their enduring partnerships with Indian counterparts, with recent collaborations like the MoU between Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) and University College Dublin aimed at enhancing student exchanges, faculty interactions, academic research, and cross-border cooperation. Anticipated future collaborations are expected to further enrich these academic relationships.