Bridging the academia of life sciences with industry in the UAE
Dr. Meis Moukayed, Professor of Natural Sciences at the American University in Dubai was one of leading scientists and academics who recently participated in a workshop held by the Dubai Science Park (DSP) to discuss educational partnerships and high skills training development needed to support Dubai Industrial Vision 2030. American University in Dubai was among a dozen leading UAE institutions who participated in the discussion focused around training future workforce of scientists in research and development, and in lifelong skills needed for the expanding life sciences and pharmaceutical industries in the UAE.

Dr Meis Moukayed explains “Dubai leadership’s outlook is very visionary in developing The Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030. It is a wise and sound decision to build a knowledge-based economy and nation that can sustain the future needs of its generations. The UAE and Dubai have top quality infrastructure to be able to attract high-end pharmaceutical, health and life science manufacturing companies to the UAE. It also has safe and regulated living and work environments to support the huge task force required to man this amazing endeavor.

In the UAE, we have excellent academic institutions, scientists, engineers and professors who can lead the specialized educational programs required to prepare, train and graduate a local workforce skilled to the highest level of excellence. We also have the diversity in the educational programs that would cater for such a manufacturing set up, with professors at the workshop coming from diverse backgrounds of expertise, which would collectively provide complementary specialty knowledge to cater for the output targets in a holistic fashion. It was evident in the workshop, that the partnerships between the education sector and the manufacturing sector can be created smoothly under the auspices of Dubai Science Park and the different regulatory supporting entities in Dubai and the UAE such as Dubai International Academic City (DIAC) and the Ministry of Higher Education. The collaboration will need increased funding resources, effort and time, but clearly there was an amazing positive energy of good will and intellectual interest from participating professors and institutions who were willing to back such a joint collaborative initiative. At the American University in Dubai, we have the academic expertise and strength to educationally enable and enact the aspirations of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 in the UAE and be an educational partner in this journey”.

“The opportunities would be immense when this strategy is accomplished. It will supply the local market with top pharmaceutical products to support the increasing public health needs of the nation, region and possible beyond in the long term. It would generate a large income of funds that could in turn be channeled to enriching the Research and Development (R&D) initiatives in academia and industry alike. In fulfilling the goals of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 we would be creating a future generation of able skilled life scientists, health professionals and biomedical engineers who would be the foundation of a stronger knowledge-based economy that can sustain its needs in the future. It all serves to strengthen building a stronger happier independent innovative nation in the UAE”.

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