Home » Empowering women means empowering societies and nations: Bodour Al Qasimi

Empowering women means empowering societies and nations: Bodour Al Qasimi

by Dubaiforum

SHARJAH, 9th March, 2023 (WAM) — Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, President of the American University of Sharjah (AUS), has emphasised the importance of celebrating the invaluable contributions of women to their communities.

In her message to the AUS community on International Women’s Day, Sheikha Bodour said, “Empowering women means empowering societies and nations and opening doors of possibility for communities to reach new heights. Today, we celebrate your strength, resilience and determination to keep progressing despite challenges and obstacles.”

Sheikha Bodour also took part via video on Wednesday in the AUS School of Business Administration’s (SBA) first Women in Business event, “Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Women in Business for a Sustainable Tomorrow,” which is one of a series of events AUS is holding in celebration of International Women’s Day under the theme “Embrace Equality.”

The event also saw the participation of Hind bint Majid Al Qasimi, Chairperson of the Sharjah Business Women Council (SBWC), as a keynote speaker and the organisation of two panels to discuss “The Role of Women in Ensuring a Sustainable Future” and “Young Women in Business: Challenges and Opportunities.”

The College of Engineering (CEN) also held a celebratory gathering for its students, faculty and staff. It reflected on its efforts in the past year to encourage women and girls to join science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). As part of the event, CEN alumni spoke about their experience working in engineering and technology.

Dr. Fadi Aloul, Dean of CEN, stated, “Our work reflects our mission to ensure the full participation of women and girls in the new opportunities digital technology is creating worldwide. As we mark International Women’s Day in CEN, we are also mindful that the UN focuses this year on achieving equality and empowerment for women and girls in innovation, technological change, and education in the digital age. This closely ties in with our work as we contribute to the UAE’s efforts to further advance gender equality in the technological space and realise its innovation agenda.

Last year, the college established the Women in Engineering Committee to act as an inspirational and advising body on issues related to women and engineering and designed a dedicated web page highlighting the achievements of female faculty and students.

The percentage of female students is above the world average, with 37 percent of students at the undergraduate level and 47 percent at the graduate level is women.

The college, he said, also launched the CEN’s Hall of Fame last year to recognise alumni achievements, many of whom are women currently holding senior executive and ministerial positions.

Organised by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) and the Association of Women Engineers (AWE) student chapters at AUS and supported by the Office of Student Affairs, this year’s celebrations also included a mini hackathon open to all AUS engineering students and a panel discussion with four accomplished women engineers.

Students were invited to propose ways to enhance the enrollment of more women in STEM majors with an opportunity to pitch their ideas to the expert women’s panel.

The Minor in Women’s Studies at the AUS College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) continues to attract students from all majors, offering them opportunities to critically analyse theoretical frameworks related to women, but within multicultural and multidisciplinary contexts.

Dr. Mahmoud Anabtawi, Dean of CAS, said, “We must continue to support and empower women in this field, so they may continue to lead the way in creating a more inclusive, diverse and dynamic educational landscape. In an increasingly complex world, we must provide our students with a robust, well-rounded learning experience and the skills to excel in their career paths and broaden their horizons.”

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