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Vocational training centre for students of determination opens in Abu Dhabi

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Abu Dhabi
dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com Filed on April 17, 2021
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Adek inaugurates Al Karamah Training Institute, to empower students of determination, specifically those with autism.


A brand new vocational training centre has been opened for students of determination in the nation’s capital.

Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (Adek) inaugurated the Al Karamah Training Institute (AKTI), a tailored education centre for students of determination with an increasing level of independence and access to vocational training in eight main areas of specialisation.

The specialisations are - electronics and robotics, hydroponics and aeroponics, culinary and hospitality, creative arts, business administration, print and design, gaming and e-sports and video production and editing.

The Institute is designed to empower students of determination, specifically those with autism, said a press note from Abu Dhabi Media Office. The institute will provide students with future pathways for independent living and employment opportunities. The opening coincides with April’s World Autism Month, which aims to increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism and foster greater worldwide support.

After welcoming its first cohort of autistic students in November 2020, AKTI, which works with students aged 15-years-old and above, said it is engaging in a series of vocational workshops designed to foster hands-on practical learning experiences in key industries linked to the UAE’s future human capital needs.

The brand-new, purpose-built campus on the grounds of Al Karamah School Abu Dhabi consists of state-of-the-art specialist facilities including innovation rooms, a gaming room, video production and editing studio, an industrial kitchen, creative studios and a sensory garden. The school and training Institute is operated by the UK’s Priory Education and Children’s Services, an independent education provider for Students of Determination and part of the Priory Group.

Families of students of determination who have already progressed from Al Karamah School to Al Karamah Training Institute have responded favourably to the increased options for their relatives. M.L., the mother of a student, Eissa Al Dhahri, said: “My son was not happy in his mainstream school, but since he shifted to Al Karamah, he has made great progress. We were thrilled when he was offered a job after attending the Training Institute, we are so grateful to the school and really appreciate the efforts and levels of support for our children.”

Amna Al Akbari, the sister of Ahmed Al Akbari, another student at Al Karamah Institute added: “Since joining the Institute, we have noticed great changes in my brother’s personality, he loves the Institute and enjoys spending time with us.”

Khalifa Al Menhali, a 20-year-old student, said: “I have taken part in electrical, hydroponics, arts, and creativity workshops at Al Karamah Institute; I have learnt a lot and I now have a range of practical knowledge and skills - from how to design and build an electrical convertor, to the methods and techniques required for planting a variety of vegetables. In addition, the Institute has taught me important life skills which I use every day. I believe I can do anything and be anything I aspire to be, I would love to be an architect.”

Hamad Al Kaabi, a 19-year student said the exposure at AKTI helped him secure employment at Mubadala Healthcare.

AKTI has also partnered with major industry leaders to create a cache of specialist certified vocational courses. Dr Al Khaili, chairman of DCD, said, “By enhancing educational infrastructure and boosting creative skills, People of Determination can serve as motivators and catalysts for transformative social and fostering a truly inclusive community."

Sara Musallam, Adek’s chairman, stated, “The opening of Al Karamah Training Institute underpins this commitment and is in line with Abu Dhabi’s comprehensive People of Determination strategy. A progressive stride forward that extends options for families across the emirate, the new institute will provide critical vocational opportunities for students, which will provide them with the knowledge and skills to play an important role in our inclusive society.”

Ali Rashid Al Ketbi, chairman of the Department of Government Support – Abu Dhabi (DGS), said, “By facilitating complementary frameworks for private-public partnerships across the emirate, we are creating secure and sustainable pathways for students of determination to find lasting careers in Abu Dhabi’s public sector that will significantly aid the happiness and wellbeing of our wider community.”

dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com

author

Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88





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