March 31st – April 6th Students from Duale Hochschule Baden Württemberg Mannheim (DHBW) and Université de Toulon (UdT) joined counterparts from the Faculty of Management at Canadian University Dubai (CUD) for the launch of an exciting and innovative International Exchange Project, combining academic studies with an industrial workplace training program and a series of interactive social events.
Jointly organized by the CUD Study Abroad Office and the Faculty of Management, the project saw students attending seminars delivered by a series of high profile guest speakers with an intensive program of visits to several major companies based in the UAE.
During the week-long program, the students worked in teams on specifically designed projects related to the seminar content and their industrial visits.
The overall Project consists of 2 phases, the first in Dubai and the second phase in Europe from November 24th to December 7th, 2019.
Participating students from CUD were evaluated by a selection committee using strict criteria including their current undergraduate program, current CGPA and credits completed. They were also required to submit a one hundred word pitch indicating why they should be chosen for the initiative.
The program of events was launched with an overview of UAE culture by Dr Marc Poulin and MBA Alumnum Hashem Salem. This was followed by two guest speakers, Johannes Distler from Roland Berger, and Sonne Joerg from HLAG.
The official Opening Ceremony took place after lunch and this was followed by a visit to DIFC which concluded the first day’s events.
The second day involved an extensive visit to Dubai Airport Terminal 3 Cargo Village (DCG) in the morning where students were shown the range of complex activities involved in large scale container transportation. DCG is considered one of the most technologically advanced cargo handling facilities and is ranked as the world's 8th busiest air cargo terminal.
Vice President Ralf Schreiber and Silvio Weiland from DHL then gave an outline of their activities after which the students broke into project groups. The day concluded with a Dhow boat cruise with dinner.
On the third day there were two lectures on campus covering Supply Chains in the UAE by Dr. Marc and the scope of International Business by Dr. Lewis, followed by guest speaker Rafeeque Chilam Kandiyil from the Minaar Group.
After a break-out for individual class sessions, there was a visit to Porsche, whose Regional Office in the UAE is ranked the fourth largest subsidiary of Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG.
Day four started with a visit to the Emirates Aviation College, the Middle East’s leading educational institution for aeronautical and aviation-related studies, followed by a presentation at the Shangri-La Hotel on Operations Management. The evening was devoted to a social get together at JBR, Dubai Marina.
The final day of the formal program consisted of presentations by each of the student project groups and the Closing Ceremony. This was followed in the evening by dinner at Blue Waters.
At the end of the week the students could finally have a well-deserved and relaxing weekend and were taken on a desert tour on Friday followed by a Saturday visit to Abu Dhabi where they visited the Louvre, the Corniche and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. The event concluded with a last visit on Sunday at the new DHL Express Distribution Center in Meydan.
Judith, a student from DHBW currently completing her degree and working in logistics said her interest in the project stemmed from wishing to see how the topic applied in an international setting. She was pleased to test her knowledge with students from different countries and cultures. She felt she benefitted from experiencing a Middle Eastern environment and her highlight of the trip was the visit to Porsche.
Stephane, a French student from UdT, who is completing his Masters in International Trade, Development and Fair Trade, chose to take part in the Project because of his commitment to the environment. He said he’d gained new perspectives in Dubai and said that in every visit he had learnt something new. What impressed him most was the strength of the teamwork he experienced with the other students.
Speaking after the event, Mr. Sid Attou, Manager of Admissions, Transfer to Canada and Alumni Relations said that joint student projects and cooperation between universities and business are essential nowadays.
He continued, “It is satisfying to see that our students understand the importance of practical knowledge and entrepreneurial skills, which encourages them to strive to make the most of the opportunities provided by CUD. Emerging technologies have altered client preferences, and today, business is focused on client relationships and not around the service. Today’s students must concentrate on tomorrow’s opportunities, some of which we are still discovering.
He concluded, “Practical experience is exactly what will be needed to solve interesting problems in the future. You need to expand your horizons, learn new things, which will open many opportunities for competent specialists who are very much in demand.”
Acting Dean of the Faculty of Management, Dr Marc underlines the importance of such projects: “the Faculty of Management at CUD has increased its focus on international partnerships and involvement in industry to provide students with a rich learning experience. Students need to understand real life problems in various parts of the world, and how to think creatively and critically to find solutions. In addition, the project allowed the students to work with different cultures, which is crucial in developing soft skills for international organizations.”
The Baden-Württemberg-STIPENDIUM supports the international exchange of students and vocationally qualified people. Since 2001, it has enabled more than 20,000 young people from Baden-Württemberg to gain experience abroad and allowed scholarship holders from other countries to visit Baden-Württemberg. Approximately 1,500 young people receive a Baden-Württemberg-STIPENDIUM each year.www.bw-stipendium.de
Baden-Württemberg-STIPENDIUM for University Students – BWS plus
With the Baden-Württemberg-STIPENDIUM for University Students – BWS plus, the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung supports innovative joint projects between universities from Baden-Württemberg and their international partners. The programme, which is endowed with approximately 1.2 million euros annually, was announced for the first time in 2011. Since then, more than 70 BWS plus projects have been supported at universities in Baden-Württemberg.
The foundation Baden-Württemberg Stiftung is committed to creating a vibrant Baden-Württemberg worth living in. It paves the way for cutting-edge research, diverse educational activities and responsible interactions with our fellow human beings. The Baden-Württemberg Stiftung is one of the major operational foundations in Germany. It is the only one that invests exclusively and non-partisanly in the future of Baden-Württemberg – and thus in the future of its citizens.www.bwstiftung.de