As part of its mandate to leverage entrepreneurship in the Sultanate, Zubair Small Enterprises Centre (Zubair SEC) has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with The International College of Engineering and Management (ICEM) – an affiliate of the University of Central Lancashire, UK – forming the first MoU by Zubair SEC with the academic sector.
This MoU comes as part of many recent endeavours by Zubair SEC to reach out to the academia towards raising students’ awareness on the potential within entrepreneurship in the Sultanate and equipping graduates on how to explore alternative career paths and self-employment opportunities.
According to the MoU, ICEM will direct its students and alumnis who have entrepreneurship ideas to Zubair SEC for the needed coaching and business advisory services. Zubair SEC’s team of professional advisors will assist students in the areas of developing business plans, feasibility studies, and strategic planning and management of their existing or potential small businesses.
Both parties will also exchange experienced lecturers to engage with members from both sides on entrepreneurship-related topics. Furthermore, advanced business incubation spaces to be launched soon by both parties will be open for member entrepreneurs to support them in the critical first year of operating.
“The International College of Engineering and Management (ICEM) provides very focused vocational degree qualifications in essential industry sectors for the Oman and GCC economy. Our graduates have some of the best employment prospects of graduates in the region. We are very proud to have signed this collaborative agreement with Zubair SEC to work with our students and graduates who are interested in setting up their own businesses. By working with some of the best entrepreneurs in the region we will be able to give our students the necessary skills and confidence to turn their entrepreneurial ideas into a successful business,” said Dr. Martin Brown, Dean of the International College of Engineering and Management.
On his part, Hani Obeid, Advisory Board Member of Zubair SEC, said, “I am very excited on this new agreement between the Zubair Small Enterprises Centre and the International College of Engineering and Management. Building an entrepreneurial ecosystem does not complete itself without joining hands and resources with the academia. Building an entrepreneurial society is a current need and a future investment and we cannot accomplish that without the assistance of the academia who instill in men and women of tomorrow such commitment and devotion to innovative ideas. Together we will work on combining theory with practice and share with students a few lessons of what ideas and concepts they can have and how they can take them to reality. Such active teaching methods will only foster a closer relationship with our society while stimulating active participation among students with successful business men and women.”
Zubair SEC is one of the initiatives which emanated from The Zubair Corporation’s Social Responsibility strategic vision towards the Omani society. The vision reflects the corporation’s belief in the importance of small enterprises (SEs) in enhancing the national economy and contributing to sustainable socio-economic development. The centre comprises a team of socially engaged and business savvy advisors who put all effort to contribute to leveraging the Omani community through equipping and enabling entrepreneurs and start-ups to grow with their businesses in a sustainable and responsible manner. Since its launch in 2013, Zubair SEC has joined to its membership 70 small businesses and around 100 entrepreneurs from all sectors of the economy to benefit from its services and support.
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