Wednesday 30, March 2016

Dubai – MENA Herald: H.E. Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education, visited Hamdan Bin Mohammed Smart University (HBMSU) as part of a series of field visits aimed at strengthening communications with higher education institutions in order to encourage constructive dialogue and exchange views on the reality and the future of education in the UAE. H.E. Dr. Belhoul was welcomed by the faculty, administrative body and senior officials led by Dr. Mansoor Al Awar, Chancellor of HBMSU, who reiterated his institution’s continuing commitment to supporting the development of the educational system in accordance with the latest technological innovations, best international practices and scientific foundations. This will help achieve UAE Vision 2021’s goal of preparing a new generation characterized by knowledge, innovation, and the ability to build a competitive knowledge-based economy.

The Minister was briefed on HBMSU’s leadership in supporting national efforts to develop higher education in line with the requirements and objectives of the UAE’s ‘smart’ transformation. His Excellency learned of the smart learning methodology adopted by the university which employs the most advanced tools and techniques to meet students’ needs in the UAE and the Arab World. He commended the leading steps taken by university, especially in terms of implementing a ‘lifelong learning model’ which helps individuals to gain scientific knowledge and achieve operational efficiencies and ultimately contribute to overall development and prosperity.

H.E. Dr. Belhoul met with learners and alumni of doctoral, master and bachelor’s programs and listened to their insights on the significance of smart learning in supporting academic and professional careers. The learners shared the opinion that educational innovative technologies such as the ‘virtual classes,’ play an important role in the provision of flexible learning methodology, which is further characterized by ease of use and availability around the clock, which in turn promote the possibility of reconciling the university and working life. The learners and graduates also provided Dr. Belhoul with an in-depth briefing on the ongoing support of HBMSU through the opening of direct communication channels between the learners, the academician and the Deans during the study and after graduation, particularly through its series of quality initiatives like the ‘Business Incubation Center,’ ‘e-CAPS’ and the ‘Orientation and Skills Development’ program, among other services as well.

H.E. commented HBMSU’s cultural diversity, which characterizes the faculty members and proves to be beneficial to learners who are given the opportunity to learn from various leading international experts, pointing to the significance of the ‘University online book store,’ which includes rich knowledge resources that facilitate the development of ideas and scientific research. Lastly, Dr. Belhoul expressed his gratitude in meeting the learners and graduates, urging them to exert more efforts in order to achieve academic excellence and contribute to the country’s comprehensive development.

During his visit, H.E. Dr. Belhoul toured the university’s campus and listened to a detailed explanation from Dr. Al Awar on the teaching methods, technical solutions and smart methodologies adopted by HBMSU. He was also informed about the qualitative initiatives that have consolidated the university’s position as a leader in promoting scientific research, enriching knowledge, and promoting the culture of creativity and innovation through smart learning.
There were discussions as well on HBMSU’s valuable contributions in grooming a generation capable of building a smart and sustainable economy through ‘Virtual Classrooms’ which provide a strong foundation further enhancing the flexibility and quality of smart education. The talks with H.E. Dr. Belhoul focused on ‘Smart Vocational Guidance’ services which are provided as part of the university’s commitment to strengthening communications among students, graduates, and the business community.

The Minister commended HBMSU for serving as a model for the future of smart education in the Arab World. He emphasized that such a scientific stature at this level of excellence and leadership provides a solid pillar for achieving the national agenda of ‘UAE Vision 2021,’ specifically the development of a high-level education system that keeps pace with the UAE’s remarkable developments under its wise leadership. H.E. Dr. Belhoul also underscored the need to further improve communication among higher education institutions in order to share best practices, insights and creative ideas to achieve leadership in higher education as well as global competitiveness in scientific research.

For his part, Dr. Al Awar said: “We are honored to have H.E. Dr. Ahmed Belhoul in HBMSU, which continues its efforts under the guidance of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and President of the University, to forge a better future for education in the Arab World based on innovation and creativity in order to meet the requirements of the 21st Century. His visit is an excellent opportunity for us to review our leading educational approach which is based on adopting the latest innovations in smart technology. This approach has proven to be effective in advancing national efforts towards a ‘smart’ transformation that is in line with the vision of our wise leadership. HBMSU reaffirms its commitment to continue fostering a culture of innovation in education, as a proactive way to achieve growth and progress and optimally invest in future generations.”