The College of Engineering at the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) celebrated the launch of the new Aerospace Engineering program. The course offered at UAEU’s Department of Mechanical Engineering teaches aerospace theory and practical skills to produce engineering graduates who are well prepared to serve the UAE’s aerospace industry. This is the first sub program launched by the College, which is supported and financed by Mubadala Aerospace, Communications Technology & Defense Services.
The Chief Executive Officer for Mubadala Aerospace, Engineer Homaid Al Shemmari, attended the program launch ceremony where he met with Professor Mohamed Albaili, Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at UAEU, Professor Reyadh Almehaideb, Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies, Professor Amr El-Dieb, Dean of the College of Engineering, in addition to members of faculty, staff and students.
During the ceremony Dr. Albaili welcomed guests on behalf of the University’s Vice Chancellor, Dr. Ali Rashid Al Noaimi, and congratulated the University and Mubadala on their strategic partnership, citing it as an important step towards supporting the aerospace industry and preparing a qualified national workforce capable of leading this vital field.
Speaking at the event, Homaid Al Shemmari, CEO, Mubadala Aerospace and Engineering Services said, “This partnership with UAEU reaffirms our commitment to the development of our homegrown aerospace talent and commitment to establishing mutually beneficial partnerships. The program will provide the necessary skills for young Emiratis to progress in our growing aerospace industry. Not only will the program develop engineers for the future, but it will also address the skills gap, providing young Emiratis with essential training in aerospace and ultimately empowering this talent.”
The program commenced in the fall semester of 2013 and has already experienced significant growth, with the second intake of students almost doubling to 40 students in the Spring semester of 2014. Successful completion of the first subject, Introduction to Aerospace Engineering, will prepare students for enrollment in four subsequent courses that focus on aircraft structures, aircraft stability and control, aerospace propulsion systems, and aerodynamics of subsonic and supersonic aircraft. Mechanical Engineering students who successfully complete the program will graduate with a minor in Aerospace Engineering in addition to their Mechanical Engineering degree.
The program is designed to engage students in solid experiential learning by participating in independent research and hand-on projects in a newly developed Aerospace Engineering laboratory. This laboratory will house essential facilities, including a wind tunnel for aerodynamic testing, a gas-turbine engine, aircraft structural test arrangements, and various other test arrangements. With these lab facilities, students will have opportunities to participate in student-led design teams and have opportunities to partake in undergraduate research.
Successful students will have the opportunity to attend internships at one of Mubadala’s aerospace companies within the UAE or overseas during the course of their program. The internships will provide students with vital work experience on practical projects alongside aerospace industry professionals that will build their experience and prepare them for careers in the UAE’s growing aerospace industry.
In conjunction with the launch of the program and to provide students with an environment that fosters creativity, the program supports extracurricular activities that are designed to motivate students and nurture their passion and curiosity. As a result of this support, a group of Mechanical Engineering female students, launched the Aerospace Club at UAEU. This club is officially recognized by UAEU and is currently seeking official recognition to become an international organization recognized by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). This is the first aircraft and aerospace industry student club in the UAE, and is under the chairmanship of UAEU student, Tasnim Al Naqbi.
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Jean O’ Neill
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