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Study UK Alumni Awards winners honored in Riyadh
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 21 - 10 - 2021

RIYADH – The British Embassy and British Council announced the recipients of the Study UK Alumni Awards 2020-2021 in Saudi Arabia at an awards ceremony, hosted by the British Ambassador here on Wednesday evening.
UK alumni from Jeddah, Riyadh, Dhahran, Qassim and Thuwal were honored in recognition of their outstanding achievements as business professionals, entrepreneurs and community leaders, as well as for their major contributions in strengthening collaborative ties between the UK and Saudi Arabia.
Addressing the award distribution ceremony, British Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Neil Crompton said: "I am delighted to host the 7th Study UK Alumni Award ceremony in person this year, and have the chance to meet many of bright Saudi women and men who are driving economic success and social impact through their work, in their professions, and in their communities to achieve the Vision set out by their leadership. This prestigious international award celebrates UK higher education and the achievements of outstanding Saudis who studied in the UK and are using their education to make a positive impact," he said.
The ambassador emphasized that this reflects the wider partnership between the two countries. "My congratulations toall our finalists and winners, and I encourage many more Saudis who have studied in the UK to apply to the awards so that more of these amazing stories can be shared, not only to celebrate their success but also to inspire others."
Speaking on the occasion, British Council Country Director Eilidh Kennedy McLean said: "The remarkable individuals we celebrated today at the Study UK Alumni Awards in Riyadh have all taken their UK education as a starting point to excel in their chosen careers and shape the world around them. This year's awards ceremony is testimony not only to the diversity of UK alumni and their endeavors, but also to the transformative impact of a UK education. With more than 100,000 alumni of a UK education, there is much to celebrate."
The award received around 1,300 applications from international UK alumni in more than 100 countries, representing more than 120 UK higher education institutions across the UK. Following in-depth interviews with a judging panel, recipients were selected for the three award categories: Professional Achievement, Entrepreneurial, and Social Impact.
The Professional Achievement Award, which recognizes alumni who have distinguished themselves through exemplary leadership in their professional field, was presented to Dr. Roua Alsubki, alumna of University College London. Dr. Roua is vice dean of Skills and Development Deanship at King Saud University, the first female to hold this position, striving to instill the same professional ethics and skills in students as those she developed during her own experiences in the UK. She was also the head of the Clinical Laboratory Department at the College of Applied Medical Sciences at KSU, working on evaluating biosafety and biosecurity research in national laboratories to ensure they meet international standards. She authored several publications in local and international scientific journals.
The Social Impact Award, which acknowledges alumni who have made an exceptional contribution to creating positive social change, was presented to Dr. Bandar Alosaimi for establishing COVIDAT, a website aimed at providing scientific information on Covid-19 in Arabic. He saw a need, at the start of the pandemic, to translate developments in medical research to the everyday Arabic reader in a simplified and digestible way to avoid misinformation and misconceptions about the virus. A graduate of University of Manchester and University of Salford where he earned his Masters and PhD degrees, Dr. Bandar works as Assistant Professor of Virology at the Faculty of Medicine, the Head of the Virology Research team and Chairperson of Research Laboratories at King Fahd Medical City. In addition to his online presence, Dr. Bandar also actively participates in research into respiratory viruses across the Kingdom.
The Entrepreneurial Award, which highlights alumni who have played a leading role in business innovation, was presented to Dr. Wail Mousa, graduate of University of Leeds. Dr. Wail is the founding dean of the Entrepreneurship Institute and Professor of Electrical Engineering at King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM). He was the first Saudi to be sponsored by Dhahran Techno Valley for a PhD in Electronics and Electrical Engineering from the University of Leeds. His achievements include publishing over 50 publications, authoring 3 best-selling books and designing 6 patents. In addition, through the Entrepreneurship Institute, he has supported over 30 successful start-ups, which have generated over SR25 million in cumulative revenues and created more than 100 jobs over the last five years.
Oct. 29 last date to apply for Study UK Alumni Awards 2022
Meanwhile, applications are invited for the Study UK Alumni Awards 2022 that can be submitted until October 29. The names of qualified candidates will be announced in December this year or January 2022 and winners from Saudi Arabia will be announced most probably in March 2022.
The Alumni Awards were instituted by the British Council and UK universities, and are open to alumni currently residing in any country outside the UK, who have studied in the UK, at an officially recognized provider of UK university degree level study for a minimum of a term or semester, or who have been awarded a full UK degree level qualification or higher, by a UK university, within the last 15 years.

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