Tajikistan is dying to get out of obscurity. It’s longing to be known, experienced, lived. It wants to continue its story, one that’s been written since 600 BC. Universities offer the chance to learn dying languages and explore the history of the area. Tajikistan’s position between China and Uzbekistan provides students with a rare glimpse of rugged central Asia, where you can see the stunning valleys of Zeravshan, celebrate the traditional Navruz spring festival, and acquire a taste for qurutob. Study abroad in Tajikistan and you can be one of the 100 international students who take this leap each year!
Tajikistan is a country dominated by stunning mountain ranges. The country itself is relatively new, but people have been making their home among the peaks for more than 3,000 years. Wherever you choose to study abroad in Tajikistan, the extraordinary beauty of nature will be just outside your door, beckoning you to the endless possibilities they promise.
Dushanbe is the capital and beacon of the country’s movement to rebuild after Soviet rule during the turn of the 20th century. Modern Asian influences, largely from China, wear away at previous Russian architecture, causing a new life to emerge in the city. Dushanbe boasts the majority of the nation’s top universities, including one with specifications in technical, agrarian, medical, pedagogical, and Slavonic colleges. You can sip tea at traditional chai-honas (teahouses) on your study break, and fill your days off with visits to beautifully designed mosques and historic museums.
Dangara is the site of the relatively new Dangara State University, founded in 2013. There are several degree programs and a library open to the entire city. Because of talks of relocating the capital to Dangara, there has been new construction on their current airport, rerouting of an old rail line, and total refurbishment of the city’s roads. It’s definitely an up-and-coming place to be within Tajikistan.
Despite Dangara’s increasing prominence, Khujand is actually the country’s second largest city. It’s also the oldest, featuring on the ancient silk roads dating back 2,500 years. There are several museums and four prominent 4-year colleges, as well as the Panjshanbe Market, one of the largest covered markets in Central Asia.
The primary job market in Tajikistan is agriculture, though aluminum and vegetable oil production are tied for a close second. As such, common jobs involve trade and export, and international work is valued.
Political Science is an important field for the emerging Tajikistan, and for others seeking to understand their relationship with the greater world. Tajik towns, villages, and cities are rapidly changing, and being a first-hand witness to this is a priceless experience.
Foreign Languages are also crucial for developing and maintaining relationships with other parts of the world. Tajik universities offer small language classes with cultural trips to help you learn Persian, Tajiki, and even Russian. It’s crucial to keep regional languages alive, so a degree in Tajiki is invaluable.
History and Liberal Arts are both 4-year degree programs that benefit hugely from being taken in a place as historic and authentic as Tajikistan. Much of what you learn about will be an excursion away, and you can take advantage of being in the area to travel to surrounding regions during your free time.
Scholarships & Costs
Cost of living is relatively low in Tajikistan, and your primary expense will be the program itself. Fortunately, because its such an uncommon destination, there are dozens of scholarships to draw people in and encourage education. Check the scholarship directory for scholarships in Critical Need Languages and other Tajik-specific awards. For further help, consider setting up a FundMyTravel account and have your friends and family chip in!
Tajik universities provide dorms for their students, which is a great way to meet other students and to practice your language skills, if that is your focus. There are organized outings and a strong support network to help deal with typical problems that come up while studying abroad. It is possible to rent an apartment or stay with a family in some cases, which is a cool inside pass to their beautiful homes and decadent cooking.
You will need a visa if you are planning to study in Tajikistan. If your country has a Tajik embassy you’ll need to get the visa prior to arrival; if not, you can get a visa upon landing at the airport. Check the embassy directory for updated requirements and to see if your home country has an embassy. If you’re going to the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO), you will need a GBAO Permit. You can apply for this at the same time as your visa.
GoAbroad’s Inside Scoop
So if you’re drawn to experiences that are out of the ordinary, or to mountains that promise thrilling adventures, consider spending a semester or year abroad on any of the Tajikistan study abroad programs. You’ll soon come to realize that while its nature is boundless, what will tie you down is the indefatigable and hospitable spirit of the people. Though the offer of vodka and onions may not at first seem like a welcoming treat, you’ll find that the warm spirit behind the locals is what will stay with you for the rest of your life! Help give a voice to this new and beautiful country and study abroad! Tajikistan is an option worth pursuing.