J-PAL boosts refugee education

Hassan Jameel, third from right, president of Community Jameel Saudi Arabia, says the new scheme expands learning opportunities for refugees.
Updated 20 May 2018
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J-PAL boosts refugee education

The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is launching a new scheme to help refugees access higher education in development economics. 

The goal of this new collaboration is to empower refugees through training that will enable them to leverage their local knowledge, build their technical skills, and become experts in the fields of development economics and public policy. 

Starting in the summer of 2018, J-PAL is teaming up with MIT’s Refugee Action (ReACT) initiative to provide access for selected refugees to the online MicroMasters program in Data, Economics and Development Policy (DEDP) offered by J-PAL and MIT’s Department of Economics. ReACT, which aims to connect refugees with higher education, will sponsor selected learners and provide access to five online MicroMasters DEDP courses on development economics; in-person workshops on business skills, and paid internships to put their skills into practice. 

Hassan Jameel, president of Community Jameel Saudi Arabia, said: “Education and learning are fundamental to a strong society, and providing access to MIT’s MicroMasters is a foundation upon which to rebuild the disrupted education and careers of refugees worldwide. 

“Building on computer science and entrepreneurship support for refugees in Jordan, this collaborative effort between J-PAL, MIT and ReACT creates another bespoke learning opportunity for refugees, opening doors and knocking down barriers to higher education for learners.” 

A MicroMasters is a professional and academic credential, accredited by MITx, MIT’s online learning platform, and offers individuals a route to applying for a full master’s degree program at MIT or other universities. 

The new initiative uses a carefully crafted model of blended learning — with financial support for online courses and in-person workshops, as well as strong emphasis on community building — to specifically target and overcome the educational challenges facing refugees. This track within ReACT aims to provide refugees with the tools they need to engage as technical experts with the problems facing their communities.


Al-Habtoor receives members of Dubai Police’s Esaad

Updated 15 January 2019
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Al-Habtoor receives members of Dubai Police’s Esaad

Khalaf Al-Habtoor, founding chairman of the Al-Habtoor Group, received a delegation from the Dubai Police Esaad Program Committee at the Al-Habtoor Group head office on Monday. Mona Al-Ameri, head of the happiness committee, Dubai Police, thanked Al-Habtoor for his continuous support for the Dubai Police employee happiness initiative and presented the Al-Habtoor Group chairman, and Vice Chairman and CEO Mohammed Al-Habtoor with their personalized Esaad cards.

Dubai Police representatives included Masoud Ibrahim Alhammad, Khalid Alsuwaidi, Ahmed bin Ghafan, Ibrahim Alblooshi, Salah Amin, Mohammed Shoaib Albalooshi, Gaafar Salim, Sayed Ibrahim, Abdullah Haidarah, Hasan Saleh, Thureya Balhoul, Waheeda Abbas, Waheeda Abdulqadir, Mariyam Saeed Abdulhakeem, Khalil Ibrahim Ali and Mahmood Ibrahim. Also present was Abdul Salam Marzooqi, director of UAE affairs and community relations, Al-Habtoor Group.

Khalaf Al-Habtoor said: “I am happy to collaborate with the Dubai Police in their Esaad program and be able to show our men and women in the Dubai Police corps our appreciation for their commitment to our safety.

“Dubai’s appeal as an investment haven is in its stability, and that is largely due to the safety and security the Dubai Police provides. I commend them for their continued service to our community.”

Al-Habtoor called for the private sector to work closely with the public sector and commended the Esaad program committee for their efforts to reward employees for their performance, commitment and dedication to the job. 

Al-Ameri, head of the happiness committee, thanked Al-Habtoor for the warm welcome and gave a detailed brief about the Esaad card and its uses across various sectors including: Education, tourism, hospitality, aviation, entertainment and leisure, real estate and retail.

She said: “The Esaad card is trusted by the civil servants in Dubai and the UAE. The number of Esaad cardholders is currently at 108,498 employees from 128 governmental and semi-governmental departments.”

Al-Ameri commended the Al-Habtoor Group for its continuous support for community activities, noting that the Esaad program is an innovative program designed to achieve happiness in the community.

Al-Habtoor Group joined the Esaad program in October 2017 offering Dubai Police staff extended benefits and discounts at Habtoor Hospitality and Real Estate properties, including hotels, restaurant, leisure and entertainment facilities in the UAE and abroad. Dubai Police staff are offered a 50 percent discount at Al-Habtoor Group hotels in Dubai and internationally, as well as a 20 percent reduction at the group’s leisure and entertainment facilities. It also includes special rates on the new apartments at Al-Habtoor City Residence Collection.