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Info on Buraimi?
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justcurious



Joined: 28 Oct 2009
Posts: 3
Location: Qatar

PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:26 pm    Post subject: Info on Buraimi? Reply with quote

Hello all Smile !

Has Buraimi University/College been discussed here? Not able to find anything.

What's the place like? And I mean the institution as well as the town.

Anybody...?
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Miss TESOL



Joined: 11 Feb 2005
Posts: 47
Location: TESOL

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2009 4:26 am    Post subject: Buraimi Reply with quote

Met several folks at the annual Oman ELT conference last year and learned there are actually 2 institutions:

1. Buraimi (University) College, or BUC. A relatively new private college, around 1,500 students in a temporary campus setting while new campus is being built out of town. See www.buc.edu.om At one point this college had plans to become a university--don't know what they'd call it though since the U of B has now taken the name. Various faculty from Egypt, Jordan, India, Pakistan.

2. University of Buraimi--a new public uni with a sciences/engineering focus. They have several new buildings around the corner from BUC. Outside of the building seems quite nice going by my last drive thru on the way to Abu Dhabi. This is their first year of operation. Can't seem to find an official website for them. Last I heard, they were hiring foundation level teachers.

See

http://www.fh-krems.ac.at/news-and-press/news/2009/imc-university-of-applied-sciences-launches-outstanding-education-project-in-oman

The town of Buraimi is a very isolated border town next to Al Ain, UAE. The border fence makes life difficult for Buraimi residents, especially expats, since shopping and social scenes are harder to get to on the UAE side.

That having been said, there are more chances to practice one's Arabic on the Oman side of the border and form friendships with Omanis--not as much of a separation between Omanis and foreigners as there seems to be in the Emirates. It's a tradeoff of sorts.

I'd take Oman any day over a post in the Emirates, but that just me. The people are very friendly, not as wealthy as Emiratis and more down to earth, more secure in their identity as Omanis (with greater ethnic, cultural, geographical diversity); not always well-prepared for academic studies, especially in the smaller colleges as SQU attracts the top students, but this lack of preparation/seriousness about education is a general characteristic of Arab Gulf students. Just gotta go with the flow, establish a rapport with students, etc.

Might be worth a visit to get more of a feel for the place. From Dubai or Abu Dhabi, take a taxi to Al Ain. Tell the UAE border guards you're just going to Buraimi (main Oman checkpoint is further out of down at Wadi Al Jizi) and they'll probably let you cross without cancelling your UAE visit visa. If you don't tell them "just Buraimi", you'll have to then officially exit the UAE, enter Oman at Wadi Jizi, then re-enter UAE with associated visa expenses.
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2009 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Liked your post a lot. I hope Oman will feel Arabia Felice after a stint in Kuwait too.
Greetings,
balqis
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15864
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2009 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, it should be a massive improvement. I've never lived in Buraimi, but I think you will find the difference in dealing with the bureaucracy like day and night. IMHO, dealing with the Kuwait government was a nightmare in rudeness and inefficiency. Now, Buraimi may have a level of issues due to the new border rules, but still...

And you will feel that it just might be possible to get across the rather small place every day and not be killed in the traffic. Laughing

Good Luck

VS
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Neil McBeath



Joined: 01 Dec 2005
Posts: 277
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:17 am    Post subject: Info about Buraimi Reply with quote

Justcurious,

Buraimi is fine. It's a small town, but living there does give you some advantages.

To start with, you are closer to Abu Dhabi and Dubai than you are to Muscat, so you have a choice of international airports for arrival and departure.

The new fence is a pest. Before, the crossing from UAE to Oman was a speed bump, and people shuttled across the border several times a day. It's still possible for Omani/UAE nationals to do that, but expatriates have to use passports, use particular crossing points, and there are inevitably holdups, partly from traffic congestion and partly caused by whatever passport you have.

It also means that if you are, say, British, and you choose to go shopping in Al Ain once a week, then you will soon use up the space for stamps in your passport.

Head away from Al Ain, and it is a two hour drive down to Sohar, with another stop for a passport check at Wadi Jizzi. The road is good, and it's being made into a dual carriageway, so it is far safer than before.

Sohar is a pleasant seaside town, with a fair variety of shops and a couple of quite good hotels.

Like all these places, "good" and "bad" are relative terms, that depend very much on personality and experience. I would say that Buraimi would be a good place to work. I've certainly worked in far less attractive locations in Oman.
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justcurious



Joined: 28 Oct 2009
Posts: 3
Location: Qatar

PostPosted: Tue Nov 03, 2009 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey thanks very much for all the info.

One more question: Would you recommend Buraimi to somebody who can't drive? (I can't.) Will it be next to impossible to move around? Are there local taxis or anything similar for non-drivers?

Cheers
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Neil McBeath



Joined: 01 Dec 2005
Posts: 277
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2009 4:04 am    Post subject: Information about Buraimi Reply with quote

The Oman National Transport Company runs scheduled services from Buraimi to Sohar and on to Muscat.

There are share taxis and "baisa buses" (minibuses) that do the same route, only faster and they cost slightly more - very slightly more.

Within Buraimi itself, Omani taxis (orange and white) operate, but I am not sure if they can cross the frontier with passengers (the old rule was they they could not pick up passengers in Al Ain.) UAE taxis are green and white, and even under the old rules, they were reluctant to cross the frontier and frequently tried to overcharge.

On the Al Ain side of the fence, minibuses operate a sort of scheduled service to and from Dubai (they have the habit of leaving as soon as rthey are full, regardless of the timetable) and there are larger coaches that leave for Abu Dhabi.

If you are travelling from Abu Dhabi on Etihad Airlines, and are a member of the Etihad Frequent Flier Programme, the airline will provide free coach transport from Al Ain to Abu Dhabi International Airport.
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone on location at UoB/University fo Buraimi, please share your insights.
The uni seems to have very good Mittel Europa roots and credentials. Rare thing in the Khaleeje Middle East, after all.
Might be interesting.

Do let us, who still believe there exists a Khaleeje better than the one we happen to be cast away and shipwrecked right now, know...

balqis
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Duffy



Joined: 29 Oct 2005
Posts: 449
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Think I will strike this place off my "where to go next" list

Duffy Laughing Laughing
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why? After all, German - Austrian roots oblige! Can anyone think of anything better in all matters academia?
So why strike it off?
balqis
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Duffy



Joined: 29 Oct 2005
Posts: 449
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Sat Dec 12, 2009 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

balqis,

'Cos I'm a comfirmed 'Lalalite'

Duffy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Sat Dec 12, 2009 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No that I know what a ''confirmed Lalalite'' is but at least I know it was meant as a jest.
Is it only the Anglo, not the Saxon? Or a Frankophile?
Anyway, everyone who has been in the Gulf for a while must have noticed the - very meagre - effect of the Anglo spell cast over the Khaleeje education.
balqis
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williamh



Joined: 30 Jan 2008
Posts: 24
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Lalaite' is a joking way to say that Duffy lives in Salalah.

and I haven't noticed (in 7 years in the Gulf) an overwhelming 'anglo' influence on education. The language of instruction is often English but the teachers seem mainly Indian or Arab, while the educational programs are from all over: New Zealand, AUB, Canada, etc.

I have never seen a university with a majority of teachers from England.
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 159

PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I see. So we have a different perception of the matter at stake.

balqis
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15864
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

williamh wrote:
and I haven't noticed (in 7 years in the Gulf) an overwhelming 'anglo' influence on education. The language of instruction is often English but the teachers seem mainly Indian or Arab, while the educational programs are from all over: New Zealand, AUB, Canada, etc.

True... although you may have a TEFL department that has a majority of one nationality or another.

But... the number one "anglo influence" is the fact that these universities *are* taught in English rather than the native language of the citizens. A very odd situation IMHO... where else does that happen?

I think I would blame/credit the British. (multiple choice verb Laughing)

VS
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