Maldives began to face drastic changes at the end of the 21st Century in terms of education, when the number of high school leavers began to increase as the number of scholarship opportunities to study abroad began to decline. During a time when there were limited opportunities for higher education in the public sphere, Villa College established itself on equal footing with public higher education, redefining and leading the country’s private higher education.
Today, Villa College, established by the Chairman of Villa Group, Honourable Dr Qasim Ibrahim, is the leading private higher education institution in the Maldives, providing educational opportunities for Maldivians at an affordable price, within the country. Initially established as a training institute on 28 January 2007, Villa College raised its status, becoming the first private college in the Maldives in less than ten months from its inception. Over the years, Villa College has expanded not only in size but in stature and diversity as well. The journey that started in October 2007 with only 20 students has grown to over 3,000 students learning across a number of diverse disciplines making it one of the foremost and popular colleges in the Maldives. Within just five years, Villa College grew in terms of academic and administrative capacity, and today programmes in the areas of Accounting, Business, Education, Hospitality, Computer Science, Multimedia Technology, Law, Public Health, Marine Studies, Shariah, Counseling, and also offering programmes from niche areas such as Art and Design.
In addition, opportunities for students in skills training and professional studies in Accountancy, Marine Studies and Hospitality and Diving are also available in Villa College. Villa College also offers the most number of postgraduate programmes in the country, including Masters of Arts in Education, Master of Business Administration, Master of Shariah, Master of Information Technology, Masters in Research Studies and Master of Research in Public Health, Master of Science Accounting and Finance. Accordingly, Villa College has been the leader in higher education in terms of postgraduate studies.
Over the years Villa College has also forged partnerships with notable International Universities. Open University of Malaysia (OUM) was the first international partner of Villa College, having contributed to creating the brand of Villa College in the community. In 2015, a new partnership with the University of the West of England (UWE) was established, which has proved to be the most fruitful partnership for the College. Since then, the College has signed to collaborate with numerous universities, the most recent most significant one being the agreement signed with Taylor’s University, which will introduce Culinary Arts as a new field of studies offered by Villa College.
Today, with its vibrant community of committed and enthusiastic staff, Villa College remains steadfast in its vision to be the leader in both teaching and learning as well as research in higher education, to reach the whole expanse of the country with opportunities for flexible higher education at an affordable price and to provide quality education recognized internationally.