Thursday 21, January 2016

Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: Masdar Institute of Science of Technology, an independent, research-driven graduate-level university focused on advanced energy and sustainable technology, today announced that 33 members of the Young Future Energy Leaders (YFEL) 2015 outreach program were honored for successfully completing their year-long training and mentorship experience.

His Excellency Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State, and Chairman of Masdar, presented certificates of completion to the fifth batch of YFEL members at the graduation ceremony, which was organized during the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week 2016. The ceremony was attended by His Excellency Abdulla Al-Majid, Assistant Undersecretary and the Chief Innovation Office at UAE Ministry of Justice,Faisal Al Ali, Scholarships Division Manager, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC),Rafi Baghdjian, Chief Operations Officer Shell Abu Dhabi, representatives from YFEL sponsors such as the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), dignitaries, and guests.

Previous private sponsors and community leaders, including Salem bin Kardous Al Ameri, son of Mohammed bin Kardous Al Ameri, the renowned Emirati philanthropist who made the first private contribution to YFEL, also attended the event.

Dr. Ahmed Belhoul, CEO, Masdar, Dr. Fred Moavenzadeh, James Mason Crafts Professor, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Engineering Systems, and Director of the Technology and Development Program, MIT. Dr. Behjat Al Yousuf, Interim Provost, Masdar Institute, Dr. Lamya N. Fawwaz, Vice- President of for Institutional Advancement and Public Affairs, Masdar Institute, Hamza Kazim, Vice-President for Operations and Finance, Dr. Steve Griffiths, Vice-President for Research, and members of the YFEL 2016 program were present on the occasion.

Dr. Lamya Fawwaz, said: “This annual ceremony honors YFEL members who have successfully completed their year-long courses, overseas visits, and training programs that equip them to be future leaders. It also represents the culmination of the development phase the YFEL members pass through on their journey towards becoming leading professionals in clean energy and sustainable sectors. We congratulate the YFEL 2015 members andwelcome the new members for YFEL 2016.”

The fifth graduation ceremony served as an inaugural event for the YFEL 2016 members while helping the YFEL 2015 members to look back on their achievements with pride. A special video on the success stories of the year highlighted the major activities of YFEL 2015 program, which included specially organized courses on leadership, policy and technology as well as visits to sustainability-related activities for communities in overseas locations. YFEL 2015 member Mohammed Bastaki offered his perspectives on the year-long experience.

Mohammed Bastaki, a YFEL member and young professional from Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said: “The opportunities provided by the YFEL program were key to widening my knowledge in the fields of renewable energy and advanced technologies, and the interactions with experts from across the world were invaluable.
During the year, YFEL 2015 members attended courses that promote innovation in different areas related to advanced energy and sustainability. These courses were led in partnership with different international government organizations such as IRENA, energy leader SHELL, and others.

As part of their interaction with government decision-makers, a group of YFEL members attended the third ‘Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Leadership Conference: Developing Energy Leaders,’ which was organized in Bahrain. The conference highlighted energy sector manpower statistics and discuss the job needs of the sector going forward. It also reviewed best practices and training and discussed leadership issues and topics such as innovation and performance.

Guest speakers from IRENA and the UAE Country Representative of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) offered their views on the role of policy-making in clean energy during a workshop in Abu Dhabi. The event titled ‘The Role of Policy in the Renewable Energy Industry’ also threw light on the nuances of developing policy framework and implementation techniques.

A course titled ‘Being an analyst in the renewable energy industry,’ led by officials from Masdar, IRENA, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the International Energy Agency (IEA), and the World Bank offered advice on prominent tools and data sources that could help nurture the YFEL members into full-fledged industry analysts. An entrepreneurship boot-camp, a course on “Water Science and Technology,” and the annual knowledge seminar organized by Royal Dutch Shell on the role of gas in the region’s energy transition were all designed to provide YFEL members a competitive edge in the professional arena.
Overseas visits to Japan and Indonesia helped YFEL members strengthen their knowledge and professional insights. The Japan visit offered YFEL members an opportunity to explore new smart sustainable and clean technologies currently implemented successfully by communities. The Indonesia visit, on the other hand, challenged YFEL members to become creative in their interaction with the community and develop adoptable non-grid locally-manageable green energy systems.

YFEL offers participants exceptional and unmatched access to top global leaders, senior business executives and academics engaged in alternative energy and sustainability through events such as World Future Energy Summit (WFES) in Abu Dhabi and other major events held overseas. The program is mandated to educate, inspire and empower students and young professionals to become future leaders capable of solving the world’s most pressing challenges in advanced energy and sustainability.

Through such activities, the YFEL program seeks to contribute towards developing talented youth who could become future decision-makers and energy leaders.