Over 303 Nigerian students from 17 states in the southern Nigeria have received about $7.5m (about N2.7bn) in full or partial scholarships from 225 universities and colleges to study in the United States for the 2019/2020 academic session.

A statement on Tuesday by the Information Specialist, Public Affairs Section, US Consulate General, Lagos, Mr Temitayo Famutimi, said the acting US Consul General, Osman Tat, disclosed this during the 2019 Education USA pre-departure orientation for the students who received admission offers and scholarships from US colleges and universities.

The statement said Tat explained that the list of acceptances for Nigerian students for the upcoming academic year had been impressive, cutting across many of the 50 US states.

He said, “I encourage you to make the most out of your time in the United States to acquire the requisite skills needed to support Nigeria’s development.”

According to the statement, the students have been accepted for undergraduate and graduate degree programmes at top US institutions ranging from Ivy League universities, liberal arts colleges, women’s colleges, historically black colleges and universities to community colleges.

The statement added that the pre-departure orientation was intended to assist the students to prepare for their move from Nigeria to attend a college or university in the US.

Participants also had the opportunity to meet with students currently studying in the US who offered tips on how to prepare for the US academic, social, and cultural environment.

The statement further stated that annually, through the Opportunity Fund Programme, the US Consulate’s EducationUSA Advising Centre assists talented low-income students who are good candidates for admission to US colleges by funding their application process.

It noted that according to the latest Open Doors Report, Nigeria is the 13th highest sending country of international students to the US, with about 12,693 Nigerians currently studying in the United States.