The sixth edition of the annual Al Ain Education & Career Fair (AECF), which opened on (28 April) at the Al Ain Convention Centre on 28-30 April, was officially inaugurated by H.E Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Youth, Culture & Development.
The three-day event helps job seekers, fresh graduates and school leavers enhance their professional skills and look for career opportunities with companies including ADFCA, ADWEA, Emirates Insurance Company, Mubadala Aerospace, First Gulf Bank, Supreme Council for National Security as well as higher educational opportunities with some of the world’s best institutions.
Among the companies exhibiting who are looking long-term to develop a sustainable local workforce are Etihad Airways and ADNOC. According to the Etihad Airlines Q1 2014 results, within the core airline, 1,516 employees are Emiratis, 18 per cent more than the same period last year. Etihad Airways have implemented an Emiratisation programme, which includes schemes for cadet pilots, engineers and graduate managers.
ADNOC, another significant exhibitor at the fair, announced last year that is has aimed to hire 2,500 Emiratis as electrical or mechanical engineers, as part of the wider efforts by the capital to increase the number of nationals in the workforce. ADNOC and its subsidiaries are also planning to employ a total of 4,000 Emiratis by 2014.
Khurram Saeed, Exhibition Director, AECF said: “Emiratisation in the private sector alone is set to increase tenfold over the next seven years. The United Arab Emirates is really investing in its people’s future.”
“The substantial growth of this fair over the past six years is a testament to the growing demand for local talent, and we actually sold out of floor space six weeks before the event.” added Saeed.
A new vertical for this year’s edition of the fair is Psychometric Testing. cut-e, who have worked with blue chip companies such as Emirates, Mudadala, Alkhorayef, Etihad Airways, Aujan and Dubai Duty Free will be offering free online assessments at their stand. Visitors will be able to meet with specialised consultants, practice the tests, and receive a personalised report highlighting areas for development and help in evaluating the most suitable career path.
The fair has also witnessed an increase in support from some of the world’s leading educational institutions. The thousands of school students expected to visit the show this week will have the opportunity to meet several major universities such as Glion Institute of Higher Education, Paris Sorbonne University and the New York Institute of Technology.
“NYIT has enjoyed participating in AECF for several years. It’s important to remember that our educational mission extends throughout the UAE, not just to Abu Dhabi. Our presence will allow NYIT students to share their experiences with potential students to give them and their families a sense of what it is like to study at our university.” Dr. Garon Wheeler, NYIT-Abu Dhabi Campus Dean.
Other participating education institutions include the Emirates College of Technology, Emirates College of Advanced Education, Al Ain University, the New York Institute of Technology, University of Sharjah, Khalifa University, the University of Jazeera and many more.
Sponsors for Al Ain Education & Career Fair 2014 include GHQ Armed Forces, ADVETI, Institute of Applied Technology, ETIHAD Airways, ADNOC, Al Khawarizmi International College and the New York Institute of Technology.