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Coronavirus Pandemic

STEM skills must to excel in post-Covid world, say UAE female engineers

Ashwani Kumar /Abu Dhabi Filed on June 27, 2020


Companies will now increasingly look to hire those who are able to learn and adapt to different environments.

Education and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) skills are more important than ever in a post-Covid-19 world. Emirati female STEM graduates feel it is a critical factor that will help them excel in their careers.

Companies will now increasingly look to hire those who are able to learn and adapt to different environments and situations, said Hala Alzargani, the first female Emirati engineer at the US aerospace and defence firm Lockheed Martin.

"Future jobs and careers are going to rely heavily on diverse skill sets such as critical and analytical thinking, adaptability, collaboration and problem-solving. STEM subjects teach students to think logically, work methodically, and address complex problems from different angles. I believe a strong foundation in STEM prepares students for the jobs of tomorrow," said Alzargani, lead project engineer at Lockheed Martin's Centre for Innovation and Security Solutions (CISS) in Masdar City, Abu Dhabi.

Alzargani supports the development and execution of STEM development programmes for Emirati students, engineers and industry professionals. "People with a good STEM education have a significant advantage when looking for jobs and will probably find it one more easily than those who lack the necessary STEM skills."

Adapt to new job market

Aisha Al Ali, another Emirati engineer, noted that her peers with STEM-related degrees can easily adapt to new job market requirements. "We realise that STEM-capable workers have the most sought-after soft skills in any applicant pool. They are able to understand and apply data and develop solutions to complex problems, and these are important skills that are required for future careers. I feel very fortunate that the UAE as a country gives a lot of emphasis to STEM training," Al Ali said.

Asma Al Hawai, an Emirati STEM student and current intern at the CISS, said forward-thinking countries like the UAE have realised that a workforce with STEM talent is vital for sustained growth "Successful countries use scientific discoveries and technologies to drive development. Innovation is only possible using the expertise of specialists in STEM fields," Al Hawai added.

Ashwani Kumar

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