Members of the Young Future Energy Leaders (YFEL) 2016 program were honored for successful completion of their year-long activities during a gala event at Masdar Institute campus.
His Excellency Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State, and Chairman of the executive committee for the board of trustees of Masdar Institute, awarded the graduation certificates to the 2016 YFEL members. YFEL is an outreach program of Masdar Institute, providing select young professionals and students from the UAE and abroad with valuable training, development and mentorship in the area of alternative energy and sustainability.
The ceremony was attended by His Excellency Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister for Climate Change and Environment, YFEL sponsors, government stakeholders, Dr. Behjat Al Yousuf, Provost, Masdar Institute, other officials from Masdar Institute and members of the 2017 YFEL program. The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) was the sponsor of the program from 2011-2016, supporting YFEL’s efforts to develop the energy leaders of tomorrow.
Dr. Lamya N. Fawwaz, Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Public Affairs, Masdar Institute, said: “Today’s young men and women will be the decision-makers of tomorrow. That is why it is so important that we invest in their knowledge and skills, particularly in sustainability and energy, which impact all our lives. We are proud of the 2016 group of YFEL members and are confident they, like their peers before them, will become leaders in sustainability and innovation.”
The annual YFEL experience includes specialized courses, workshops, training and participation in international energy conferences and discussions.
This year a select group of YFEL members engaged in a Youth Circle discussion with His Royal Highness Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, during his visit to the Masdar Institute campus. UAE government leaders including His Excellency Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of State and Chairman of Masdar, and Her Excellency Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, UAE Minister of State for Youth Affairs, were also part of the Youth Circle.
A group of YFEL members also participated in the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP22) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), held in November in Morocco. There they learned how science, policy, and government come together to tackle serious issues and participated in youth panels, where members shared their insights and perspectives with a range of participants from multiple countries and backgrounds.
Earlier in the year another group of YFEL members visited Japan as part of the Japan International Cooperation Center’s (JICE) annual YFEL-Japan Joint Government Initiative. There they experienced workshops, presentations, and immersive learning, visiting leading Japanese companies like Toyobo Japan and academic institutions including Tokyo University, and meeting high-level delegates.
YFEL member Tawaddod Saif Alkindi recalled this about her Japan experience: “The Japanese water quality and resources workshop at Sophia University in particular was intense. Now I have good theoretical and practical overview of water resource management, which will help me to think of solutions related to this field.”
Another key part of the year-long experience for YFEL members was a schedule of mandatory courses on technology, policy and leadership. Some of the topics included ‘Batteries and Fuel Cells’ and ‘Building a Robot’.
YFEL member and engineer with Dubai’s Road and Transport Authority (RTA) Abdulaziz Alhammadi said the ‘Building a Robot’ course enriched his ability to do his job going forward. “The YFEL program enhanced my design approaches for street lighting projects to use friendly environment and energy saving lights all over the ongoing projects as my contribution to creating the green economy for the UAE,” he explained.
YFEL members also applied their boosted confidence and skills to a number of technical competitions during their year, resulting in a number of awards.
At the annual UAE Undergraduate Student Research Competition (UGSRC) YFEL members Sidra Siraj and Sumiyya Faheem Rabbani won the top prize in the biology category with their presentation on ‘Development of ceramic-polymer nano-composites with potential biomedical application’. At the Infiniti Engineering Academy 2016 Challenge fellow YFEL member Shihab Solaiman became the first-ever UAE winner of a career opportunity in Formula One racing. Solaiman said: “I am excited to be working at the forefront of innovation and owe it to the experience I in engaging in programs like YFEL, which helped me develop my passion and skills for engineering.”
01 March 2017