Dubai: University campuses buzz as welcome week begins

Students will get to know their peers through a range of diverse and interactive activities



by

Nandini Sircar

Published: Wed 7 Sep 2022, 1:36 PM

Last updated: Wed 7 Sep 2022, 9:18 PM

It’s back to campus time, with colleges in Dubai organising their welcome week and universities gearing up for freshmen classes.

Some universities have also launched their significantly redesigned and strategically modified programmes for graduates, entrepreneurs and working professionals from all streams and disciplines.

Dr Saif Al Seiari, Vice Chancellor, Amity University Dubai said, “We welcomed new students and parents for orientation on Wednesday, September 7. This will be followed by a week of events and activities for students.

During Amity Freshers Week, students will get introduced to their professors, meet classmates, get a better understanding of their subjects, sign-up for clubs and learn more about life at Amity Dubai. The week-long welcome is a great opportunity for students to interact with current and former students through a range of diverse and interactive activities.

Our institution was accredited by the Ministry of Education, and this will be an added layer of comfort for Emirati and GCC students seeking to work in the public sector.”

While ice breaking activities, orientation programmes and acclimatising new students to a novel setting have already begun at most places, actual classes will begin a bit later at some universities.

Professor Tadhg O’Donovan, Deputy Vice Principal, Heriot-Watt University Dubai opines: “The new academic year starts with welcome week (September 5-9) for new students All students will return to campus from September 12 for Week One of the semester.

It is an exciting time for us as we continue to evolve, innovate and improve our teaching and learning practices from responsive blended learning. Designed to support students during the pandemic with "globally connected learning", it takes full advantage of our unique global footprint, preparing students for a future of work that is enabled by our state-of-the-art, digitally connected campus in Knowledge Park.”

He adds: “We are already seeing students coming in, and at Heriot-Watt University Dubai, this week (September 5-9) is Welcome Week: our induction week with lots of activity on campus to welcome new students to the university. Students will meet their faculty, personal tutors, and fellow students, and learn more about their academic programme and the various support services available, such as Careers and Well-being.

Our Student Council hosts several events throughout the week including the Watt Fair, where students can join our clubs and societies and learn to how to get involved throughout their studies. Our digitally-connected campus is an amazing environment to support learning, and students are encouraged to explore. Staff and student volunteers are located at key points around campus to answer questions and help students find their way.”

Facilitating young leaders

The renewed programmes at some universities are aimed at offering in-demand courses like Business Analytics, Systems and Sustainability, Critical and Design Thinking, Decision Making, Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship as core management courses that focus on real world industry practices and challenges.

Educationists say the courses have been revamped to accommodate changing industry demands and to train young leaders to conquer this new age of disruption.

Dr Srinivasan Madapusi, Director of BITS Pilani, Dubai Campus, said: “With an eye on emerging technologies and changing business environments, BPDC has introduced changes in the structure of the courses.

We want our students to emerge as game-changers in this new age of digitisation, sustainability, and de-globalisation. We wanted to go beyond management studies only by enhancing the role of business in society; therefore, our admissions are now open for students of all streams. We aim to produce an enriching environment for students irrespective of their backgrounds.”

Universities highlight that they are also mentoring the next generation of the country’s talent to thrive in a competitive global work realm with new industry alliances.

“Our new student orientation started on August 25, and the first day of classes began August 29", said Dr Mohammed Djeddi, Vice President, Academic Affairs, Canadian University Dubai. "This year has seen the introduction of two new Bachelor of Arts in Communications programs: the Bachelor of Arts in Communications – Advertising and Integrated Marketing Communications, and the Bachelor of Arts in Communication – Digital Media and Journalism.

These programs have been developed to respond to the innovations in the modern media landscape, and to prepare students for employment in an industry driven by accelerating technologies. Additionally, we launched the new Masters program, Masters in IT Management, which covers Data Analytics and Digital Transformation skills.”

Hameed Al-Obaidi, Senior Students Enrollment Counselor, RIT Dubai said: “This year we have introduced the Bachelor of Science in Psychology – a four-year degree program that offers two tracks in Clinical Psychology and Biopsychology.”

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