KP Sharma 

Unlike in the past, the undergraduate scholarship both within and outside the country for academic session 2023 saw a decrease in the number of slots and courses announced by the education and skill development ministry on January 30.

The ministry’s initial intake last year was 162 slots which dropped to 111 slots across various programmes in colleges within and outside the country.

The decline in slots is attributed to the availability of the courses as some of the courses previously offered are no more.

An official from the ministry said the programmes announced by the ministry are only the critical courses which are recommended by Royal Civil Service Commission.

He said that the slots announced are in critical areas that require more human resources in future.

MBBS or APEMS programme which has only 40 slots last year has been increased to 70 in the 2023 intake.

It is basically targeted to address the shortage of human resources in the health sector and has a bigger impact on the country.

He added that these scholarship programmes are related to the employment market and have a bigger scope of employment.

The slots, according to the official may increase later when diplomatic offices and ad hoc sponsored scholarships by individual agencies are announced.    

Some courses offered on scholarship in the past were not suitable for market employment. Graduates had difficulties finding relevant jobs in the market, the official said.