E-ducation conference sets ambitious goals for future

ABU DHABI - A spectacular laser and pyrotechnics display along with a high-voltage video film, marked the opening of the three-day conference on 'e-ducation Without Borders' conference which was opened at the Federal National Council (FNC) premises yesterday, attended by student delegates from around the world, ministers, officials and senior businessmen.

By Anupama V. Chand

Published: Sun 23 Feb 2003, 2:59 AM

Last updated: Wed 1 Apr 2015, 10:26 PM

Welcoming the students, Shaikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, and Chancellor of the HCT, said that the UAE, under the guidance and support of the President, His Highness Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, has developed a broad spectrum of educational institutions and programmes and made continuous efforts to improve the quality of these programmes and to match and exceed the world standards. Shaikh Nahyan underscored the importance of education and training in the life of UAE citizens, which according to President Shaikh Zayed, was necessary for progress and prosperity.

"The subject of the conference has important social, economic, and political ramifications. It explores a new dimension of education, that has become important to the quality of our own lives, as well as those of future generations. I am proud that the students of the HCT are hosting a significant international conference, and am confident we will be able to identify benefits of our work together, which will enhance the role of e-education around the world," Shaikh Nahyan said.

Shaikh Nahyan noted earlier, that his three main objectives for the conference were: to build new strategies for the efficient delivery of e-ducation; to reflect upon the strategies developed during the 2001 conference, and to continue the growth of the Global Student Forum.

The FNC's newly-elected Speaker, Saeed Mohamad Al Kendi, noted that the UAE, under the leadership of President Shaikh Zayed, was committed to engagement and participation in the Information Age. Mr Kendi urged the students to use the conference to focus on how to make the new opportunity of education without borders serve, not only for the present generation, but also for future generations.

On Shaikh Zayed's support for the event, he said: "His patronage shows his confidence in the youth of the world and affirms our country's strong commitment to educational excellence, our commitment to developing student leadership abilities, and our commitment to global dialogue and the peaceful exchange of ideas."

In his keynote address, sprinkled with real-life annecdotes and dry humour, Dr Edward de Bono, world expert and writer on thinking and learning, urged people to abandon conventional patterns of thinking, and adopt lateral thinking exemplified by his 'Six Thinking Hats' theories.

Jeroen van der Veer, president of Royal Dutch Petroleum Company spoke to the students on the issue of Innovation, and Alain Robert, 'Spiderman' who wowed crowds in the capital on Friday by scaling the tallest building in Abu Dhabi, presented a slide show.

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