Huawei launches Seeds for the Future 2018
Latest edition of program aims to get young Emiratis to develop ICT solutions on new technologies
Huawei has launched the 2018 edition of its Seeds for the Future Program in the UAE, an educational program which aims to develop student projects into technology solutions.
The program will run in around ten universities in the UAE, up from five last year, and expects to attract around 150 ideas from students. The program challenges students to present ideas, with the best ideas, and the students selected for incubation and mentorship at Huawei's headquarters in China.
This year's program was launched today at an event attended by His Excellency Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Skills, Essa Al Zaabi, Senior Vice President of the Institutional Support Sector, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Engineer Omar Al Mahmoud, Acting CEO of ICT Fund in TRA, and David Wang, CEO of Huawei.
HE Dr. Ahmad Al Falasi commented on the event: "I would like to thank Huawei for the opportunity to once again support Seeds for the Future, an important initiative that enables closer ties between the private sector and university students in the UAE. I am delighted this year's program will see greater participation from universities across the country, allowing more students to showcase their technology skills and innovative ideas. The ICT sector is key to the UAE's transition to a competitive knowledge-based economy and initiatives such as Seeds for the Future help foster the entrepreneurial thinking among our youth necessary to drive our sustainable growth and development."
Speaking at the launch Huawei CEO David Wang said that there are three major technologies which are emerging - the Internet of Things, 5G, and Artificial Intelligence, and that the Seeds for the Future program will help to develop ideas around these. Huawei has invested in these and other technologies, he explained, with 10bn euros R&D spend in 2017, and the program, aims to challenge young Emiratis to develop solutions in these areas.
"We have this program with great support from the Ministry Of Higher Education, the TRA, and Dubai Chamber of Commerce, and we want to attract the best talent of the country, bring them to our labs, let them know what is happening with these technologies and share our roadmap, and then they can use these technologies to develop the applications for the country, the local community but also for the region and the world. "We want to pass what we have to the next generation and create more value to society," he said.
Essa Al Zaabi, Senior Vice President of the Institutional Support Sector, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said: "Dubai Chamber is proud to be associated with this unique initiative and I look forward to learning about the innovative ideas and projects that the participants come up with, and offering support to talented students through training and hands-on experience, as well as networking and access to career opportunities."
Al Zaabi added, "The Chamber's support for the competition falls in line with the non-profit public organisation's strategy which aims to foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among youth in the UAE, and encourage students to develop their skill sets and turn their ideas into a reality."
Engineer Omar Al Mahmoud, Acting CEO of ICT Fund in TRA, said: "Since its launch in September 2016, the initiative has achieved successive successes through the innovations of university students. One has invented a smart cane for the blind, able to alert the user to surrounding obstacles, another has invented a smart system for vehicles, which alerts drivers about the safe driving distance and tracks violators, and many other bright examples. The students also traveled to the People's Republic of China, to Huawei's headquarters, as part of a professional training program to refine their skills and broaden their knowledge. They have applied the saying: seek knowledge, even if you have to go as far as China."
Al Mahmoud added: "I conclude with these inspiring words ‘The Year of Zayed'. The name of our father ‘Zayed' is marked in our hearts. Our country is on the rise, and we are united among all segments of society in the public and private sectors, industry, education, people and leadership. We are united as the name of our country ‘United Arab Emirates'. The first founders are the pioneers of our renaissance, their stories and lessons inspire us for the future, and how to achieve everything from nothing, with the seeds for the future."