EspañolSome 60 percent of Venezuelans who studied abroad in 2013 and 2014 did not return to their home country after graduation, according to Ombudsman Tarek William Saab.
After a meeting with representatives of the National Center for International Business (CENCOEX), Central Bank, and Finance Ministry, Saab expressed his concern that students who leave the country to pursue education goals are not returning “to use their talents to benefit the country.”
“Of the students who study abroad — which is 18,000 — 83 percent are studying foreign languages; it is important to note this detail,” he stated.
He further explained that half of those students are studying English, while 33 percent are learning other languages.
“I do not believe that there should be a priority for requests for foreign-exchange students who want to study English or Mandarin,” he stated.
In February, Venezuelan sociologist Iván de la Vega reported that over 1.4 million Venezuelans have left the country in the last 20 years, and the amount of those who return to their home country is the lowest in all Latin America. Venezuela has lost “its most important capital,” he says, referring to the “intellectual capital” that has left with scientists, technicians, doctors, and other professionals.
On February 27, the Association of Venezuelan Students in Spain denounced the “unfortunate situation” that students face when they do not receive permission to study abroad. They have also presented other reports to the European Parliament and the High Commission of the United Nations.
The Venezuelan ombudsman said he had received 250 such reports in the last three months, and will dedicate time to “diagnose and evaluate the global situation.”
CENCOEX is currently in charge of administering student requests to study abroad. Those who wish to study in other countries must apply with the regulatory body, obtain authorization, and pay for their own enrollment and monthly expenses.