KU Affairs

Khalifa University and Ministry of Education to Commence National Ambassadors Program ‘Estedad’

August 17, 2020

Led by Khalifa University Experts, Tracks on ‘Enrichment’, ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship’ and ‘Scientific Research’ to Have 25 Students Each
Khalifa University of Science and Technology, in collaboration with the UAE Ministry of Education, today announced 19 August will mark the beginning of three tracks under the National Ambassadors Program ‘Estedad’, which aims to enrich the capabilities of students in high school and prepare them to excel academically, gain more insights in entrepreneurship and scientific research.
Khalifa University will be offering the three tracks – enrichment, innovation and entrepreneurship, and scientific research. Each of the tracks lasts for two-weeks and is led by a Khalifa University expert. Each track has 25 students from Grade 11 and 12, of which 20 are UAE nationals. Students were selected on the basis of their academic and behavioral performance in the school’s transcript and their score in National Ambassador Program entry assessments. Apart from the requirements from the UAE Ministry of Education, Khalifa University assessed their capabilities and potential through an interview and selection process.
Khalifa University organized an orientation session for the ‘Enrichment’ track students recently that included a general overview of the university and its academic programs, in addition to an introduction to the track.
Dr. Amna AlDahak AlShamsi, Acting Assistant Undersecretary, Activities Sector, expressed her appreciation for this solid collaboration between the Ministry of Education and Khalifa University of Science and Technology which became a nationally remarkable scientific symbol full of a diverse range of specialized experiences in many critical areas. The Ministry of Education seeks to leverage the university’s resources to empower students through a collaboration that can achieve the goals of the two sides and their future ambitions represented in creating a new generation who is able to rise and compete in different fields including Science and Technology, Innovation, Scientific Research and Entrepreneurship.
HE also added that the engagement of the students into these tracks which is led by Khalfa University is an ideal opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills in those tracks as well as introducing them to the nature of university life and the most important skills a student should own during his/her academic journey.
Dr. Ahmed Al Shoaibi, Senior Vice-President, Academic and Student Services, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, said: “We are happy to collaborate with the Ministry of Education on the Estedad capacity building initiative and contribute to developing talents and skills in key areas of importance for high school students. Our academic and research infrastructure provide the right learning ground for these students who can develop themselves in enrichment, innovation and entrepreneurship, and research tracks during this summer. We believe this summer program will prove beneficial to them as they seek higher academic and professional excellence for their future career.”
Led by Dr. Hassan Barada, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies, College of Engineering, and Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Khalifa University, the ‘Enrichment’ track will focus on ‘design thinking’. It will seek to promote the students’ knowledge and skills in different aspects, train them on scientific areas including artificial intelligence (AI), programming, and robotics. It will also introduce them to design thinking, research methodologies, creativity and innovation while equipping them with the skills needed to apply for the university after school years. Participants will be enriched by the Khalifa University College of Engineering, which is ranked among the top 200 worldwide.
Dr. Nawaf I. Almoosa, Acting Director of Emirates ICT Innovation Centre (EBTIC), and Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Khalifa University, will lead the ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship’ track and help nurture students in the business field, embedding them with the traits and skills of an entrepreneur, and empowering them to think out-of-the-box innovative solutions. Students will gain important entrepreneurial skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, risk-taking and collaboration. In line with the UAE’s vision, Khalifa University focuses on technology-based start-ups that contribute to the knowledge-based economy.
The ‘Research’ track led by Dr. Sami Bashir, Director, Technology Management and Innovation, Khalifa University, will provide students with the scientific research methodology concepts, protecting IP rights and filing patents. This will help students understand the importance of incorporating innovation skills in conducting cutting-edge scientific research and the ability to identify and contextualize problems, validate technological solutions, collect/analyze research findings, configure and present research data into meaningful perspective. Khalifa University has the highest number of patents and IPs in the UAE – with 167 issued patents, 228 patent applications pending, and 417 invention disclosures.
The Estedad National Ambassadors Program, launched by the Ministry of Education and 18 academic and related stakeholders in the UAE, is a prerequisite for the International Ambassadors Programs that the Ministry of Education has been implementing annually since 2016.
Clarence Michael
English Editor Specialist
18 August 2020