Setting career direction and unlocking new worlds of work the Springdales way.

In my time at Springdales, Dubai I have seen ninety-seven graduates head across the globe to the universities of their choice as the next step to realising their life’s dreams and aspirations. Destinations such as Vancouver and Toronto, Canada; The Hague and Leeuwarden, Netherlands; Luzerne, Switzerland; Tbilisi, Georgia; 16 different universities here in the United Arab Emirates and top higher education institutions such as Vellore Institute of Technology, India to name a few.

Truth be known our students have access to more than 300 university and institutions across Australia, United Kingdom, United States of America, Europe and South East Asia including top 100 universities such as University of Melbourne, Cambridge University, Harvard, Stamford, Yale, Free University of Berlin and the National University of Singapore.

We have students studying careers in Engineering, Business, Psychology, Computer Science, Sports Management, Biotechnology, Media and Communication, Culinary Arts, Life Sciences, Biomedical Sciences and Hospitality Management. All from the graduating class of 2020-22.

Springdales Alumni

Starting from the beginning of the 2022-23 academic year we have introduced a partnership with CIALFO which is a website and app that facilitates tracking the destination of graduating students and the ability for Springdales students to communicate with ex-students and their parents to get real-life information for students in grades 9/10 & 11. This will enable students to ensure that the offers students do have are appropriate and realistic for those students.

So, why do destinations matter to students?

Senior students tell us, “The destination data is a good way to inform students about where their classmates are spending the next four years. It is also interesting to see which schools are most popular.” The ability to pe part of an alumni along with the destination data also enables students to get first-hand experience and have a sneak peek of the college process that their friends and classmates experienced. Middle school students say “In addition to being a way for seniors to share where they’re going to school, it’s a good source of information for grade 9,10 and 11 students to see what universities in what part of the world are popular.”

One student said, “for myself and my friends, seeing people we know getting into some of the best universities around the world makes aiming for a top school seem more achievable” Our senior teachers agree “the destination data gives all students a glimpse of the wide variety of options available to students, we hope the mature ones can look at it and say ‘All these kids are going to all these places’ and that they’ll be open to a wider range of universities and colleges than only the few that they were thinking about as their main options” At Springdales we encourage students to broaden their options initially and then surgically focus on specific options as they get closer to graduating.

The changing worlds of work

Springdales knows that today’s graduates may have 10 different jobs before the age of 40. We take the view that our students need to be prepared for jobs that do not exist today. After all, who would’ve thought even five years ago that social media influencer would be such a sort after profile? We have already begun school-based career fairs along with a long-standing partnership providing access to online career fairs both of which are heavily focussed on overseas universities. We have also initiated an Alumni program that is available through our website and a mobile app so students and families can get real-life information directly from former students and their families.

From a teaching and learning point of view one of our strategies is to work on developing skills that will position our young people for careers that are not replaceable by technological advances. Such as: Creative jobs like scientists, novelist, and artists. Complex and strategic jobs such as CEO, diplomat, economists. Empathetic jobs like teaching, doctors and nurses. And ‘as yet unknown jobs’ like being a fleet operator for self-driven trucks.


Let’s be realistic, destinations being university-focused will likely remain the students and their family’s main priority. This is an area we have a strong focus at Springdales School, Dubai and it is our intention to become one of the schools that leads the destination conversation so as to provide an outstanding service to our Springdalians going forward.

Ultimately, for senior students specifically, alumni and destination data can offer a fantastic source of information about all of the different aspects of career choice, university offerings and university life at a very intimate level. This can only help students and their families make the best choices at this turning point in young people’s lives.