Zayed University looks at research, courses tailored for jobs
Shaikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qasimi Minister of State for Tolerance and President Zayed University delivers her keynote address during Zayed University Convocation 2016 in Abu Dhabi, September 7, 2016. Photo By Ryan Lim
Abu Dhabi - With reviews by CAA and reviews by the international accreditation boards coming up, ZU is looking to ever more improvements of its academic programmes.
Published: Wed 7 Sep 2016, 4:18 PM
Last updated: Wed 7 Sep 2016, 11:28 PM
Research programmes, new colleges reflecting the future job needs of UAE, more space and higher tech facilities in classrooms are some of the future plans for Zayed University (ZU).
Some changes, such as the creation of two new colleges and even replacing the 18 years old carpet fitted when the university first opened have already happened in these past months, but the 2017 - 2020 plan for ZU campuses in Abu Dhabi and Dubai were discussed for the first time with all faculty, on Wednesday (07.09), during ZU's Annual Convention.
"We discussed today linking our vision for the university with the bigger vision for the country, and how the vision of ZU can translate into actions," Professor Reyadh Al Mehaideb, vice president of ZU told Khaleej Times.
He pointed out that last year ZU set aside a budget of Dh 70 millions to develop the educational programmes and research. Work on most facility related projects is now complete and resources will now be allocated to meet educational and research agenda.
"This year we are working to complete the national programme for the Commission for Academic Accreditations - CAA. Therefore, we can definitely promise the incoming classes a quality education," said Al Mehaideb.
With reviews by CAA and reviews by the international accreditation boards coming up, ZU is looking to ever more improvements of its academic programmes.
Over 500 highly trained and experienced faculty members from universities worldwide are now working with ZU to help it achieve higher quality education.
Shaikha Lubna Al Qassimi, Minister of State for Tolerance and president of ZU, wants to see the university in the very top among the 70 higher education institutions in the UAE. For this, she highlighted six pillars ZU needs to adhere to in the next five years.
"First, we must ensure continuous improvement of the quality of education," she stressed.
"Second, me have to offer new programmes tailored to the needs of the job market."
This means creating new majors and constantly improving and adjusting current programmes.
In this regard, ZU is now considering more majors in social sciences, even introducing a Masters of Fine Arts in museums from its College of Arts and Creative Enterprises.
It has also approved the restructuring of the College of Sustainability Sciences and Humanities into two new colleges - the Collage of Natural and Health Sciences and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
"Third, we must meet the aspirations of the government to raise the UAE competitiveness in the field of research and innovation," continued Shaikha Lubna.
Research, in fact, for both graduate and undergraduate students, is one of the main focuses of ZU for the coming five years.
Michael Allen, ZU's assistant provost, who this year is heading the Research Office as well, went as far to encourage senior management to consider introducing research in all colleges as minor, or even major subjects, not just extra curriculum work.
Shaikha Lubna has also stressed the need to continue develop partnerships with public, private and community based organisations, particularly for training and internships programs for ZU students, as well as the need to improve administrative services and promote the values of volunteering in ZU students.