The UAE Engineering Deans Council (UAE-EDC) has been established to promote collaboration between UAE-based higher education institutions in an effort to advance engineering, information technology, and computer science education and research in the UAE.
The group brings together deans of engineering, information technology, or computer science from 15 institutions: Abu Dhabi University, Ajman University of Science & Technology, Al Ghurair University, Al Hosn University, American University in Dubai, American University of Sharjah, Higher Colleges of Technology, Khalifa University, Masdar Institute, the Petroleum Institute, New York University Abu Dhabi, UAE University, University of Sharjah, University of Wollongong in Dubai, and Zayed University.
The UAE-EDC provides a platform for members of higher education institutions to share information regarding best practices, challenges, and experiences, while supporting greater collaboration between higher education, industry, and government bodies concerned with engineering, information technology, computer science, and related fields in the UAE. Given the emerging status of engineering education and research in the country, it is this combination of resources that will create a “powerful critical mass” that will help the UAE’s education institutions compete on a global stage, said NYUAD Dean of Engineering Sunil Kumar, who initiated the formation of the group.
“We felt that it was important to create a cohort of engineering deans to address issues of common interest, and through collective effort create an ecosystem in the UAE that attracts top faculty and students,” he said. “The UAE has a great need for scientists and engineers as it continues its evolution towards becoming a knowledge-based economy. Through our combined resources we believe we can make a global impact.”
The formation of the Engineering Deans Council is a millstone in engineering education and research in UAE, and we are certain it will play a significant role in the development of this country.
As the Council also supports adoption of international standards and accreditation amongst member institutions. Dean of the School of Engineering at the American University in Dubai Dr. Alaa Ashmawy noted that the group will seek membership to its international counterpart, the Global Engineering Deans Council.
“On an international level, this group will provide us with the platform to organize conferences and knowledge sharing opportunities, stimulating a dialogue on issues of both local and global concern, such as accreditation, research partnerships, and student recruitment and retention,” he said.
Dr. Aly Nazmy, dean of Engineering and Computer Science at Abu Dhabi University, said: “Being a small country, the name of the game is collaboration and getting together regularly has indeed improved this collaboration. This group will help us understand the market demand for engineering graduates across the different emirates, and coordination with government and industry bodies will help us get feedback on their needs in terms of preparation of graduates across different disciplines.”
Dr. Yousef Al-Assaf, dean of Engineering at the American University of Sharjah, added: “The formation of the Engineering Deans Council is a millstone in engineering education and research in UAE, and we are certain it will play a significant role in the development of this country.”
The UAE-EDC was incorporated as an entity within the Society of Engineers — UAE.