Dubai Airports is reaffirming its commitment to the nation's female workforce by launching new career development programmes targeting Emirati women in managerial and internship positions, to ensure that women play an important role in the future of the UAE's aviation industry. During an event held on the 3rd Emirati Women's Day, the leading airport management company announced plans to launch its 'Aspiring Women's Programme' aimed at female Emirati managers and designed to develop high-performing Emirati women into the company's future leaders. The nine-month programme will provide Emirati Women with leadership coaching, workplace challenges, workshops, as well as support women to build their network across the organisation and wider airport community. It will ultimately lead to a professional certification recognised by the Institute of Leadership and Management. The programme supports the UAE's national agenda to achieve gender balance in the workplace and become one of the world's top 25 countries for gender equality. Today Dubai Airports employs more than 200 Emirati Women in a wide variety of roles, 32% of which are in leadership positions. Dubai Airports hopes this figure will rise over the coming years as it encourages more women to advance in the rapidly growing and important aviation sector. As well as addressing the numbers, Dubai Airports is working hard in other areas to support and empower Emirati women. It prioritises UAE nationals in recruitment processes and is launching a new external career portal in Arabic this month. The company has also enhanced its family friendly working environment with extended maternity leave and increased nursing hours that benefit all women. In addition, it is also offering exclusive opportunities for UAE nationals to pursue higher education by offering scholarships and study leave. With the aviation sector predicted to support more than 750,000 jobs in Dubai by 2020 according to Oxford Economics, which corresponds to almost 30% of all projected employment in the emirate and over 35% of Dubai's total GDP, Dubai Airports' internship scheme focuses on the future generation, with the programme currently dominated by female interns. In the current intake of graduates, 76% of applicants are Emirati women, set to gain experience in various departments including human resources and development, finance, health and safety, and corporate assurance. Partnering with two universities in the UAE, Higher Colleges of Technology and Zayed University, Dubai Airports' internship scheme runs over three months, with students gaining university credits as well as valuable industry experience. Students can apply for the internship scheme through the Dubai Airports career portal. Ann-Marie Campbell, Executive Vice President of Human Resources and Development at Dubai Airports, said: "We are delighted to launch DA's Aspiring Women Course and believe this programme will harness the potential of the many dynamic Emirati women in our organisation. The passion and commitment of Emirati women who strive to exceed in their professional lives is truly inspirational and is sure to enhance their professional careers and the future of this great country."