From University to the Workplace: Young Professionals of the Future and Their Role in the Economy
By: Dr. Ahmad Belhoul is the UAE’s Minister of State for Higher Education
The private sector has always played a central role in the skills that university graduates develop – whether through a student’s pursuit of employment in their company of choice, or a more conscious effort by businesses to identify and train talent through internships, graduate or leadership programs.
The difference today is that technologies and industries are changing at such a rapid pace that without close collaboration with the private sector, current university students may soon find themselves chasing a moving target that will always remain just beyond their reach.
It is with this realization in mind that the UAE Ministry of Education and GE have entered into a strategic partnership focused on building skills of the next generation of Emirati professionals to meet industry-specific needs.
As part of this agreement, GE will offer Emirati students internships within the UAE and abroad. In addition, a GE Garages for Higher Education Institutions manufacturing program will be developed to allow students to learn about coding, 3D printing, manufacturing, and other critical skills. Other highlights of the partnership include the launch of an “Unimpossible” Open Innovation Challenge, where students from across universities in the UAE will have the opportunity to use the GE technology toolkit to tackle a problem deemed “impossible” to solve.
These efforts are aligned with the recently announced UAE National Youth Agenda, which places emphasis on preparing the next generation of Emirati students to oversee and steer the evolution of the economy into, and beyond, the digital age. It is also intended to support the UAE Vision 2021 as our country aims to transition into sustainable knowledge-based economy.
Innovation, creativity and scientific thinking are the foundation of a knowledge-based economy and we are instilling these values in our youth—the architects of our future.
As we do so, we recognized the need to further develop their skills and empower them with best-in-class expertise that can help unlock their true potential—that is where GE, with its rich history of innovation and diverse industries, comes in.
The opportunity to leverage the company’s extensive global knowledge base, resources, expertise and professional training while up-skilling our eager and entrepreneurial Emirati youth has immense potential to shape talent development and drive economic growth. I encourage you to join us in this journey.