HCT & Shams collaborate to enable UAE youth to gain practical experience in innovation and entrepreneurship
The Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) has signed a collaboration agreement with the Sharjah Media City (Shams) to develop and empower young nationals to acquire practical and professional experience in the domain of innovation and entrepreneurship through providing students with relevant practical and professional training opportunities.
H.E. Professor Abdullatif AlShamsi, HCT President and CEO, and H.E. Dr. Khalid Al Midfa, Chairman of Sharjah Media City (Shams), signed the agreement at Expo 2000 Dubai site, in the presence of a number of managers and officials from both parties.
The agreement seeks to enhance communication between HCT and Shams in order to foster cooperation in the areas of innovation, scientific research, training and applied research projects, providing practical and professional training for HCT students, opening up opportunities for employment and professional development, and utilizing the accumulated experience expertise of HCT and Shams to benefit both parties.
H.E. Prof. Abdullatif AlShamsi, HCT President and CEO, stressed the importance of this cooperation between HCT and Shams, especially in light of HCT’s active involvement in entrepreneurship and startup establishment, not only in terms of equipping national students with skills and capacities to become entrepreneurs, but also adopting student ideas and projects and transforming them into commercial products or services of economic value and feasibility. He noted that this new role of the colleges has started in 2019 after HCT became the UAE's first approved university economic free zone, following the UAE wise leadership's directives, empowering it to transform students’ ideas and economic activities into startups, and graduate companies and entrepreneurs.
Prof. AlShamsi added that today HCT has its integrated Startup Development Program within HCT InnCuVation Spaces and this program represents a clear roadmap for students with business ideas to develop themselves as entrepreneurs and transform their ideas into startups operating in the business world. He noted that HCT has reached an advanced stage of maturity in this area as successfully graduated 138 startups, with a focus on the quality of these startups and active presence of advanced technology such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, 3D printing, and other technologies. He noted that HCT has great confidence in today’s young generation and their creativity and skills that require only guidance and opportunity to prove themselves.
Prof. AlShamsi stressed that this cooperation would support the HCT and Shams’ integrated roles in promoting the establishment of Emirati enterprises and startups, thus enhancing the investment opportunities of our youth and increasing the presence of national companies in the competitive labour market in the country, in support of the economic development.
H.E. Dr. Khalid Al Midfa, Chairman of Sharjah Media City (Shams), stated that Shams work towards achieving the visions and directions of the UAE’s wise leadership aimed at qualifying and equipping national cadres with knowledge, learning, and practical and professional experiences, especially in the media and business sectors, to develop human cadres who represent the country’s most valuable asset. He stressed that the youth are without doubt the hope of the future and that Shams collaborates with various stakeholders to develop their capacities through mutual efforts.
H.E. Dr. Khalid Al Midfa added that Shams is pleased with its partnership with HCT, which introduces an integrated national model to develop young people by providing them with various skills, sciences, and technologies that have become the backbone of all vital economic sectors, especially the media and business sectors. He noted that Shams would play a complementary role to that of HCT by providing students with various practical experiences in these two promising sectors. He expressed his confidence that Shams and HCT together will be able to make a tangible impact in the youth development in the coming period, hoping to contribute to creating a new generation of entrepreneurs who through their innovative ideas can create new opportunities for the national economy and develop the entire media sector in UAE.
The agreement will seek in the coming period to achieve several objectives, the foremost being enhancing consultation between Shams and HCT to establish a support mechanism for students’ research projects, discussing ways to support students’ startups and emerging projects, promoting and encouraging the exchange of experience in the areas of innovation and entrepreneurship, and exploring areas of cooperation in developing applied research projects.