The office of community engagement at Ajman University (AU) has partnered with Aspire Training Solutions to launch the 'Social Leadership Programme' for students and alumni of AU. Aspire is an entrepreneurial training and consulting firm specialised in delivering transformational solutions using innovative methodologies serving the private sector, community-based organisations and youth. The aim of this initiative is to generate and transfer knowledge related to social leadership by empowering and inspiring a deep and lasting transformation in the lives of AU students and alumni to live, lead and prosper.
The third sector’s transformation over the last few years makes urgent need for a new generation of leaders capable of facing and overcoming the major challenges we will face in the near future. For this reason, AU introduced the Social Leadership Programme that was created specifically for AU students and alumni to research and offer training programs dedicated to social leadership and its unique traits compared to leadership in other sectors in the United Arab Emirates. AU acted as a light house through which social leadership is fostered and sustained.
Noor AlChaghouri, head of community services at AU, said: “Empowerment of young university students and graduates comes at the top of our agenda, and today I believe that the students who attended the training programme have made great strides in discovering themselves and their societal values, and have become familiar with a methodology through which they can solve societal problems facing us today. Proud of our students and graduates and I wish them every success"
The Social Leadership Journey was a six-stage journey into self-discovery, where 16 students and alumni leaders came together to explore different areas within themselves and consequently catalyse their efforts into making a positive difference to their communities. It was delivered over a period of two consecutive days, five hours each. The programme addressed various aspects of leadership such as the characteristics of a leader, becoming an innovative change maker, a structured planner, inspiring advocate, focused collaborator, and an empowering multiplier.
The main methodology used in the training programme was experiential learning. It allows trainees to gain a better grasp of the concepts they learnt during the training by applying them in real situations. These sessions are a space to exchange ideas, reflect, learn and create new knowledge, reach conclusions and identify best practices for the proposed topics.
Nanis Yousry, head of community department at Aspire Training Solutions, said: “We are here today to deliver unrivalled integrated experiences in Social Leadership, and the solutions we implement through our unique social learning methodology perspective combines knowledge and experience that helps students and alumni in creating their social initiative goals.”
Lina Hourani, sustainability and CSR consultant at Aspire Training Solutions, said: “The most important investment for countries today is investing in youth and making future leaders. This programme that Aspire presented today is the nucleus of many training programme that we seek to offer to the youth of the UAE and the Arab world, to create a new generation that is socially responsible and creative in the field of community initiatives”.
During the closing ceremony, the participating students and alumni presented their social initiatives conclusions in identifying the best practices for the proposed topics. The projects were judged by representatives from Sharjah Media Office and Sharjah Archaeology Authority in addition to Lina Hourani. Students and alumni were presented with certificates for completing the program successfully and first place winner will later intern at Aspire – Egypt.