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Mawhiba organizes Paris forum to prepare youth for future specialties
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 29 - 10 - 2019

PARIS – King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity (Mawhiba) organized a scientific forum titled "High Impact STEM Programs: Success in measuring the global challenge" here recently. Several international experts in talent and creativity fields attended the event, which was organized in collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The forum highlighted the role of talented people in meeting global challenges and the requirements of sustainable development for creative industries that support the global economy.
In his speech, Dr. Saud Al-Mathami, secretary general of Mawhiba, said that Mawhiba sought to expand the international exchange of good practices in the field of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education and to contribute to the expansion of these successful programs around the world, considering them as factors driving the progress of civilizations throughout history.
"The new generation faces many future challenges, and that only 62 percent of the global human capital is being developed, which means the neglect and waste of 38 percent of the world's talent," he said while warning of the great global change in future jobs. "By 2022, at least 54 percent of employees need to be rehabilitated and refined, to increase the demand for high cognitive skills that include creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship, which requires strengthening educational systems, and stimulating creativity and innovation among all students," he pointed out.
The Deputy Executive Director of UNESCO Xing Qu thanked the Kingdom, represented by Mawhib, for its willingness to cooperate with UNESCO, expressing his admiration for the work model of the foundation and its strong impact on graduates.
A number of Mawhiba graduates participated in a dialogue session during which they showed how their lives were affected by various Mawhiba programs. The former president of the National Organization for Gifted Students in the United States Dr. Sally Crissell, praised the standard of students in the Kingdom
Dr. Najah Ashry, senior assistant to president of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, stressed the need to invest in talented students and prepare them to face the challenges of mankind and valued the strategic partnership between Mawhiba and KAUST.
Smion Brodsky of Johns Hopkins University's Gifted Center highlighted the importance of developing innovative thinking, problem solving, science ethics and knowledge in science education.
Dr. Khalifa Al-Suwaidi, member of the Board of Trustees of the Hamdan Bin Rashid Foundation for Distinguished Educational Performance, spoke about the need for international cooperation and investment in promising capabilities and directing distinct minds for scientific disciplines.
The Mawhiba-UNESCO Forum sought to achieve a number of objectives, including the development of creativity and educational systems and policies in the areas of science, technology and innovation on a global scale, as well as to promote ways of cooperation with stakeholders and enable the construction of diverse global networks in the fields of education.
Meanwhile, Mawhiba and UNESCO have signed a letter of intent to build a strong partnership and promote international scientific cooperation between the two sides in the fields of STEM as a key driver for the development of sustainable growth. The agreement was signed by Dr. Saud Al-Mathami, secretary general of Mawhiba, and Audrey Azoulay, director general of UNESCO. The letter of intent includes the exchange of knowledge and best practices through training, joint seminars, conferences, forums and exhibitions in the field of talent, creativity and innovation in STEM education.

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