Abu Dhabi, UAE – November 20, 2018: Sandooq Al Watan has entered into a strategic partnership with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) to expand the ‘Emirati Coder’ program to the Al Dhafra region of the emirate of Abu Dhabi. The program supports the development of IT skills among the country’s youth, in line with the government’s vision to develop a knowledge-based economy.
The ‘Emirati Coder’ program’s objective is to empower approximately 500 students in the Al Dhafra region to develop their technical and programming skills and to use their newly acquired skills in different fields to achieve the objectives of the government’s development strategies in the UAE.
His Excellency Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of State and ADNOC Group CEO, said: “We are proud to partner with Sandooq Al Watan to expand the ‘Emirati Coders’ program and support more students master advanced software. The program resonates with ADNOC’s 2030 smart growth strategy, as well as the company’s social responsibility efforts to spread knowledge and technology, invest in education and research, and support local talent development. It also supports the implementation of the UAE Artificial Intelligence Strategy, the first megaproject of the UAE 2071 Centennial Plan. We are particularly proud to expand this project in the Al Dhafra region to enhance the technical skills of local Emirati students and broaden learning opportunities for the next generation’s workforce.”
The ‘Emirati Coder’ program will be launched in Al Dhafra in November, in collaboration with a number of academic partners, including the Ministry of Education (MOE), Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK) and DarkMatter’s Ajyal Talent Management, as well as community schools in Madinat Zayed, Liwa, Al Marfa, Ghayathi and Sila.
“Sandooq Al Watan is committed to identifying national talent and enhancing local capacities, adapting them to the needs of the future,” Lt. Gen. Khalfan said. “Launching ‘Emirati Coder’ in Al Dhafra underlines the program’s objectives to endorse Emirati talent and establish a conducive environment that meets their interests and allows them to unleash their creative potential. This, in turn, empowers them to take the lead on development projects and build a sustainable knowledge-based economy, rooted in innovation, technology and the happiness and wellbeing of the community and its future generations.”
H.E. Dr. Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, ADEK’s Chairman, stressed the importance of preparing young generations for future challenges, while equipping them with necessary advanced skills that would help unlock their potential, such as creative thinking, teamwork and problem solving.
“ADEK initiates many initiatives that help achieve that goal, one of which is the Community Schools project, which encourages students to take part in national and international programs and prepares them to join the future workforce,” said H.E. Dr. Al Nuaimi.
H.E. Dr. Al Nuaimi emphasized the importance of the Emirati Coder, which has been promoted at the Al Dhafra Community Schools, enabling students to acquire knowledge on the latest technology and programming fields and develop their skills for the next age of technology. And he lauded efforts made by ADNOC and Sandooq Al Watan in supporting students and fostering innovation in order to build a knowledge-based economy.
The ‘Emirati Coder’ program also complements ADNOC’s partnership with LEGO Innovation Labs, which will enable more than 6,000 students across ADNOC schools to develop coding and robotics skills, using LEGO bricks to explore science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The LEGO Labs initiative is closely aligned with the UAE government’s renewed focus on developing a diversified educational curriculum, based on STEM disciplines, such as artificial intelligence and predictive data platforms.
Since its inception earlier this year, the ‘Emirati Coder’ program has trained 810 students in different emirates, developing their skills, enhancing their knowledge, and familiarizing them with computer programming language. It provides theoretical education through classroom lectures and online sessions, among other methods.
The program is a flagship initiative from Sandooq Al Watan, which caters to the country’s youth. It is a product of cooperation between the UAE University, Ajman Digital Government, UAE Vision, DarkMatter, and Ajyal Talent Management.
ADNOC’s corporate social responsibility strategy is in line with the UAE leadership’s vision and aspirations to build a modern education system, focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, to empower youth, support communities and implement programs that develop the next generation, ensuring they’re equipped to meet the future needs of all business sectors in the UAE.