KSU’s tourism efforts commended

Updated 03 January 2013

KSU’s tourism efforts commended

Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities, has commended the efforts of King Saud University in Riyadh in producing qualified manpower required for the sector by conducting a number of relevant courses.
He thanked the university’s rector and the general supervisor of Prince Sultan bin Salman Chair for the development of national cadres in tourism and antiquities and the members of the Scientific Committee and researchers on the activation of the chair and for the fruitful efforts they exerted to develop outstanding scientific research in the Kingdom.
A recent report issued by the chair shed light on SCTA president’s contributions to support and develop human resource capabilities and qualifications in the tourism sector. “Prince Sultan’s keenness has been manifested in all SCTA strategies and work plans that prioritize human resources requirements,” the report said.
The SCTA highlighted the chair's recent practical achievements, including its participation with three research projects in several regional and international conferences and the issuance of two books: "An Introduction to hospitality and tourism studies" and "Traditional rural houses in Unaizah."
In this respect, the SCTA's efforts were backed by the initiative of King Saud University for founding a scientific chair under the auspices of SCTA, which stands high among all scientific chairs supported by the university, in addition to launching 12 tour guidance and hotel management courses joined by 262 tourism and archaeology students and tourism and heritage enthusiasts.
The report detailed the main educational programs of these courses as follows: opera hotel room booking program, 'Amadeus' flights booking program, 'Micros' restaurants program, program of development of hotel departments supervision skills, tour guides qualification program, program of interactive and effective communication in hospitality and tourism industry, program of historical manuscripts and documents preservation methods, program of developing technologically modern display methods, program of graduation projects skills and program of modern strategies of archaeological excavation.
The chair plays a key role in training and qualifying specialists and experts in tourism, archaeology and museumology sectors and works on improving professional performance of teaching staffs and developing educational syllabi, relying on benefiting from experience of international experts in research fields and educational syllabi development.
Meanwhile, Prince Sultan received the Best Governmental Institution Award in the Arab region for social networking and digital media, which was given by the Amman-based 3rd Arab Media Forum for effective usage of social networks and digital media.
This came on the sidelines of the 30th meeting of the SCTA's board of directors chaired by Prince Sultan at SCTA headquarters in Riyadh recently.
The award was a big honor for SCTA as it came in appreciation of its achievements in the use of social networking for promoting its activities and events, depending on the most widely known and frequently visited websites; Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, together with several effective digital solutions, such as events' live broadcast on the web and different Internet interactive applications.
SCTA's efforts in this respect aimed at communicating with the public and getting them acquainted with tourism services information and all recent tourism programs.
Previously, the SCTA won several awards in the same field, most notably the award for website in the field of informatics, which was awarded by the Dubai-based institute of the Middle East Award for Distinction.
SCTA's Sales and Contracts gate garnered the Best Website Award given by the World Web headquartered in the USA.

Saudi women at the wheel: the first 24 hours

Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena getting ready to driver her car as Saudi Arabia lifted the ban on women driving iib Saturday midnight. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)
Updated 24 June 2018

Saudi women at the wheel: the first 24 hours

  • The General Security has already reported that it will be providing the required provisions for female drivers in Saudi Arabia.
  • Private insurance company Najm, in partnership with the General Department of Traffic, has hired 40 women and trained them to respond to road accidents involving female drivers.

JEDDAH:  Women around the Kingdom have turned the ignition in their cars for the first time on their home soil and hit the roads throughout the country. They have gone on social media to express their joy at this monumental occasion which has officially changed the course of their lives. 

Saudi Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena was among the very first women to drive in the Kingdom as soon as the clock struck midnight. 

Women in their cars enthusiastically and wholeheartedly cheered on their fellow female drivers on this memorable night. 

“I feel proud, I feel dignified and I feel liberated, said Almaeena.

She told Arab News that the event was changing her life by “facilitating it, making it more comfortable, making it more pleasant, and making it more stress-free.”

Almaeena urges all drivers to follow the traffic and road safety rules. “What’s making me anxious is the misconduct of a lot of the drivers, the male drivers. Unfortunately they’re not as disciplined as they should be. Simple things such as changing lanes and using your signals — this is making me anxious.”

Almaeena highlighted the significance of being a defensive driver. “I’m confident: I’ve driven all around the world when I travel, especially when I’m familiar with the area. It’s really mainly how to be a defensive driver because you have to be.”

On how society is adapting to this major change, Almaeena said: “Tomorrow is the first day, mentally and psychologically it already had that shift. As I mentioned, it’s a paradigm shift. In perception and how they view women, their capabilities — as equal partners. 

“Mentally it’s already there, and physically we will see — as we start — more and more encouragement for both men and women. Even some of the women who weren’t feeling comfortable about driving, it’s going to be encouraging for them, in a live demonstration and evidence that women can do it.” 

As roads around Saudi Arabia have been inhabited by a new breed of drivers, how has this affected the traffic flow in Saudi Arabia?

 “As of 12 a.m., the implementation of the Supreme Court order to enable women to drive and the implementation of traffic regulations to both men and women is officially in effect," said Col. Sami Al-Shwairkh, the official spokesman for General Security in the Kingdom. "The security and traffic status on all roads and areas around the Kingdom have been reported as normal. There have not been any records from our monitoring of any unusual occurrences on the road throughout the Kingdom.” 

To commemorate this occasion, as seen in the pictures circulating on social media, traffic policemen were handing roses to female drivers early on Sunday.

The General Security has already reported that it will be providing the required provisions for female drivers in Saudi Arabia.

Private insurance company Najm, in partnership with the General Department of Traffic, has hired 40 women and trained them to respond to road accidents involving female drivers.

The General Directorate of Traffic has completed all preparations to employ women on the country’s traffic police force.