Texas A&M University at Qatar wraps International Engineering Congress
- Qatar: Saturday, January 12 - 2013 at 09:42
- PRESS RELEASE
Texas A&M University at Qatar closed the inaugural World Congress on Engineering Education (WCEE 2013) Thursday at the Qatar National Convention Centre. The event, sponsored by Maersk Oil Qatar, was the first congress of its kind in Qatar and featured speakers from five continents, five members of the National Academy of Engineering, five heads of professional engineering societies, four heads of engineering education societies and over 80 speakers.
Dr. Karan Watson, President of Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) and provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs at Texas A&M University, gave the event's closing remarks and issued a charge to the congress delegates and speakers, saying, "The world is in need of more and better engineers. As we think about the engineers we educate and prepare for the challenges they are facing and will face, we cannot stand by our old routines if they are uninspiring and do not nurture the new generation. We must close the gap between the old and new generations."
Silatech Chief Operating Officer, Raed Al-Emadi, commented on the importance of outreach to young engineers and the fundamental significance of discussions such as WCEE, saying, "These meetings I take as very important because it involves educators and practitioners and those who are exposed to the engineering industry from other elements. It is important at this stage to wonder about whether or not we are doing the right thing. Usually, people have the luxury of learning from their mistakes. However, there is a lot of competition regionally and globally and not only in the hydrocarbon industry, but also in other industries, that push accelerated development. We see that and we want to ensure that our students and the young generation are doing the right thing and are going about it in the right way."
Texas A&M at Qatar Dean and CEO, Mark H. Weichold, congress general chair, said, "Texas A&M at Qatar is grateful for the generous support of our dedicated industry collaborator Maersk Oil Qatar. It would have been impossible to host this influential event without their steadfast partnership and collaboration and without the passion and expertise of the congress delegates and distinguished speakers. The University strives to be a strategic partner to Qatar's industries, as well as the Qatar National Vision 2030 development goals, and endeavors to be a premier provider of engineering education and a leading contributor to knowledge globally. Texas A&M at Qatar also works to build engineers of character who serve the greater good and address grand challenges. Discussions such as those at WCEE do just that and set forward solutions that address the needs of engineers and engineering educators in Qatar and beyond."
Mr. Lewis Affleck, Managing Director of Maersk Oil in Qatar, said, "Maersk Oil Qatar recognizes the importance of nurturing and developing local talent and are pleased to work with Texas A&M University on WCEE 2013, which will help to share good-practices in engineering education, and therefore benefit educational institutions - and future engineering students - here in Qatar."
National Academy of Engineering member, Dr. Christine Ehlig-Economedies, said of WCEE, "Meetings like this bring together people you will not going to see, normally, anywhere else. Here, I was able to attend a session on global competencies and I haven't thought about it in the way the panel members put it. There are opportunities for new collaborations and perspective research, as well as new ideas." Ehlig-Economedies is also a professor of petroleum engineering at Texas A&M University, US.
Dr. Phillip R. Westmoreland, president of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, professor of chemical and bio-molecular engineering at North Carolina State University, US, commented on the congress' scope and importance, saying, "This Congress about engineering education has been very interesting in that it is bringing together the different engineering disciplines, and reflects on the commonalities and the differences that create fruitful new opportunities and new technologies for society to use."
WCEE presented three days of workshops, panels, invited talks and peer-reviewed papers, as well as 30 different sessions and workshops that address a diverse range of topics across the engineering field. These included a leaders' track, educators' track, and a partnerships and collaborations track that addressed the role of industry, critical thinking, ethics and entrepreneurship to the future of engineering education.
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