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Employment Opportunity in Dubai

Work and study in Dubai: The entertainment capital of the world, Dubai has set its sights on becoming an academic hotspot. Helping it in its pursuit is a slew of reputed universities. Another reason why international students are increasingly exploring the city as a study destination is because it allows international students to work during study in Dubai. The fact is Dubai is still a greenhorn in higher education, while countries like the USA and the UK are old hands. So low cost of education isn’t enough to warranty Dubai a pie of international student community, because the leading countries allow students to work during study which cuts down cost of study. By allowing students to work during study in Dubai, it then plays to its twin strengths: low cost of study and opportunity to earn during study.


If we talk of international students, they are always on the lookout for work opportunities to earn a few extra bucks. Interestingly though, not many students want to work just for the sake of money, but rather want to use the opportunity to put to practical test what they have learnt in the classroom. Then there are others who take it as stepping stone to the much wider professional world. Whatever way you look at it, work during study in Dubai benefits a student in more ways than one. A follow-up question then is what are the rules and guidelines to work during study for international students in Dubai?


Here we explore the rules and regulations binding work during study in Dubai for international students:


University sponsorship and UAE Labor law


If you have a university sponsorship, you just need to approach the UAE Labor department to obtain a permit which will allow you to take up part-time work in Dubai, legally.


Before the promulgation of the present law, international students were required to transfer their university sponsorship to their employers. This had put students at the mercy of their employers, who exploited them in different ways, with non-payment of dues being one of them. The latest decree has also put a halt to instances where a student gets trapped in a fraudulent contract.


It is a win-win situation for both employers and students


While the new law has plugged the loopholes present in part-time work for international students in Dubai, it has also made it that much easier for employers to approach students with job offers. Earlier, even those employers with good intent were wary to approach students because of the complicated legal process. The aftermath of the decree has seen a greater number of employers approaching university campuses to recruit students. In addition to university sponsored UAE Labor Law-approved part-time work opportunities, students can take up on-campus employment in Dubai as well.


On-campus work opportunities in Dubai


Most universities in Dubai allow you to pursue on-campus work opportunities in Dubai. Take for example, where on-campus work is seen as an extension of academic life and an opportunity to gain hands-on experience outside the classroom.


Some of the areas you can take up on-campus work in Dubai include library, departments, administrative offices and colleges of the university you are studying at. In addition, some even work in various outlets and facilities across the university. In case of countries like AUS, student employment is managed by the Student Employment Office (SEO).


Eligibility to take up on-campus employment in Dubai


To be eligible for on-campus employment at AUS, the student must:


  • Be enrolled in a full-time undergraduate program (with minimum 12 credits) and completed at least a semester at AUS. Visiting and exchange students aren’t allowed to pursue on-campus work at the university
  • Possess a minimum GPA of 2.2

When classes are in session, students are allowed to work up to 15 hours per week or 60 hours per month. However, during the summer and academic breaks, working hours can go up to as much as 40 hours per week or 160 hours per month. Meanwhile, wages can be anything between AED 15 to AED 30 per hour.


Students must keep in mind that they aren’t supposed to hold two jobs simultaneously. If found guilty you have to forfeit payment for the second job.

Whether you want to take up on-campus work in Dubai or off-campus work in Dubai, you are advised to go through all the legalities to avoid trouble. After all, you wouldn’t want to be on the wrong side of the law in the UAE, in which case your student visa might be cancelled putting your future hanging in the balance.