HCT President & CEO Ranked as One of the World’s Top CEOs of 2020
Dr Abdullatif Al Shamsi, President & CEO of the Higher Colleges of Technology, has been named as one of the world’s most influential CEOs by the UK’s CEO Today Magazine, in the 2020 Global CEO Excellence Awards.
Dr. Al Shamsi expressed his great pride in his roles as an academic and the President & CEO of the UAE’s largest applied higher education institution, adding the focus of his work is educating UAE’s youth, “who represent the wealth of the UAE”.
Dr Al Shamsi dedicated his award to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, for their endless support of investment in education. He also praised them for their continual support of the HCT in performing its role of developing and enhancing the skills and capabilities of the youth, enabling them to secure their futures in the labor market and helping them establish startups and create job opportunities.
The rankings were adjudicated by an international panel of judges, involving multiple stages of judging, including public voting process; evaluation of the candidates according to a set of precise criteria and international best practices; and analysis and testing of the achievements, results, strategic and leadership impact; and exceptional leadership traits according to each sector, particularly in the implementation phase of any crisis management strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
From this exhaustive process the top 200 CEOs worldwide were selected, from which the most influential were identified.
The CEO Today Magazine highlighted Dr Abdullatif Al Shamsi’s influential role as HCT CEO and how he led the HCT’s success in dealing with disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. His actions included overcoming the challenges from COVID to continue its educational process; making rapid transition to online, distance learning for more than 23,000 students across 16 campuses; and launching HCT’s DIGI Campus to promote the integrated transformation of student life and activities online.
Dr Al Shamsi noted that during the period from March to May 2020, the HCT had offered more than 1.6 million distance online teaching hours, which was among the largest number of completed, online teaching hours in the world during that period. The HCT offered more than 61,000 live, online classes through Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, 115,659 online exams, and 55,000 professional development hours for its faculty.
He noted that due to its efforts with digital integration and online learning, the HCT received the Blackboard 2020 Global Catalyst Award for Training & Professional Development for faculty, and it has publishing 155,000 graduates' e-credentials on the Blockchain platform, for approximately 66,000 graduates from 1992 to the present date.
Dr Al Shamsi also noted that the UAE leadership's vision and future foresight, coupled with the Government Excellence Model pillars, had led the HCT to successfully overcome the COVID-19 crisis due to its proactivity, readiness, agility and innovation. He said HCT is now more prepared to deal with crises, particularly as it had successfully pivoted the COVID-19 challenges into many achievements throughout 2020.
He noted the HCT education model, with the system-wide digital transformation during the pandemic, had been recognized and praised by international journals including the International Journal of Higher Education, Higher Education Digest and Harvard Business Review Arabia.
Dr Al Shamsi spoke of how the HCT was able to maintain continuity of business during the COVID-19 pandemic and implement its HCT 4.0 strategy, taking advantage of the educational changes and opportunities emerging from the crisis. This included the implementation of its Hybrid Education Model, which combines face-to-face classroom education (on campus) and online distance education, as well as creating a new institutional culture that promote opportunities for young people to develop their skills.
The CEO Today Magazine enjoys a global reach, being shared with over 150,000 of the world’s most prominent CEOs, who rely on it to provide relevant and stimulating content, which motivates the leaders of today, as well as highlighting entrepreneurial experiences, leadership models and successful strategic shifts the leaders have implemented worldwide.
The list of winners is published on the magazine's website at CEO Today Global Awards 2021 (ceotodaymagazine.com).