Global Entrepreneurship Week at Canadian University Dubai

Dubai, UAE, November 14th-21st, 2022:  Entrepreneurship Week is an annual globally celebrated event which propels the navigation to build one global, entrepreneurial ecosystem – connecting students, entrepreneurs, investors and researchers.  Budding entrepreneurs showcase innovative solutions to conceptualize and apply the strategic tools in business. The Canadian University Dubai (CUD) community celebrated Global Entrepreneurship week, followed by an impressive awards ceremony on November 21st, 2022. 

According to https://www.genglobal.org/gew Global Entrepreneurship Week was launched in 2008 in the United States of America and has since gained momentum in approximately 200 countries, influencing more than 10 million people in the world of entrepreneurship. 

“Entrepreneurship is everyone's business at CUD. Our entrepreneurial spirit is inspired by our mission to develop the next generation of entrepreneurs, and this is inherent in our every action”. Prof. Naveed Yasin, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Head of Entrepreneurship and the Creative Industries

CUD is one of the very first universities in the United Arab Emirates to participate in Global Entrepreneurship Week.  Students are mentored to apply learnt theory through practical application.  The week is an event filled schedule of strategic activities in product development and service delivery to provide platforms for CUD’s students to connect directly into industries and to ultimately accelerate on the journey of entrepreneurship.  The greater purpose is to develop the needs of the local community – strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem. 

“There is a misconception from the industries that universities are impractical and only theory based. However, Global Entrepreneurship Week at CUD is one of many strategic links which is applied within a university setting to initiate and connect learnt classroom theory to real-life organizational contexts.  Our students are pioneers in a revolutionized system”.  Prof. Naveed Yasin, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Head of Entrepreneurship and the Creative Industries

The awards ceremony of Global Entrepreneurship Week honours and recognizes the pioneering initiatives presented by CUD’s students – which are themed around six categories, each of which are closely connected to a specific program at CUD.  Two jury’s, one comprised of faculty members from CUD, and the second panel including external thriving experts from the industry, assessed and evaluated each of the student’s projects through real-time feedback.  The internal panel included esteemed faculty members, Dr. Rachid Alami, Associate Dean, Graduate Studies, Faculty of Management; Dr. Tamer Mohamed, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Faculty of Engineering, Applied Science and Technology; Dr. Ghada Abaido, Head of Communication Department, Faculty of Communication, Arts and Sciences. CUD welcomed distinguished guests to the City Walk Campus, to participate on the industry panel, including: Fly Dubai; Air Canada; I’m Inclusive; Morgan International; and Career Coach, Michelle Ross.  The awards ceremony was also attended by CUD’s Senior Management: Prof. Karim Chelli, President and Vice-Chancellor, Dr. John Newark, Executive Vice-President, and Dr. Mohammed Djeddi, Vice President of Academic Affairs. 

“Human potential is limitless.”  Suhina Mayet, CUD Student

1st place was awarded to CUD’s pioneering students for their innovative app called The Ultimate Student App:  Canadian University Dubai Uniology, presented by CUD’s students:  Suhina mayet, Sanyah Mayet, Rahmath Sharfa, and Yasmeen Khadri.  

“We did not expect our idea to be so well received and we did not imagine winning 1st place!”  Suhina Mayet, CUD Student

The students presented a comprehensive and integrated community app for Canadian University Dubai.  CUD Uniology is a mobile solution which simplifies campus life, providing quick access to multiple university services – a one-stop portal to endless opportunities.  The app prototype intends to engage the whole CUD community conveniently and efficiently on one platform.  The app is a conglomeration of all aspects of university life and communication – course information, announcements and events – and moreover incorporating the small details such as parking ticket validation, classroom location, course registration and class attendance.

 The platform facilitates the connection between leaders in the world of business and CUD’s learning pioneers.  Global Entrepreneurship Week has facilitated pathways for CUD’s students to showcase the innovative app to business experts, who are interested to collaborate further and bring the CUD Uniology app to life.  

“There were so many positive experiences born during Global Entrepreneurship Week. Panellists on the spot were interested to collaborate and invest in our project.”  Suhina Mayet, CUD Student

Multiple teams of students presented innovative projects during the awards ceremony.  Guided through the leadership of Prof. Sayed Abdul Majid Gilani, Associate Professor, Faculty of Management, CUD – the students: Lara Ismail, Razan Khawatmi, Muhamad Fajiz Arafeh, Abdul Karim Shaikh, Mathilda Louwens presented ‘Healthy Vest: Be Smart, Eat Smart’ which is filled with purpose.  

“Our society underestimates the significance that healthy living, through food, is the source to life.”  Razan Khawatmi, CUD Student

The project is inspired by the United Nation’s Sustainability Development Goals.  Healthy Vest tailors’ meal plans via a subscription to the Healthy Vest app. Calculated client assessments personalize the meals incorporating each subscriber’s preferences, allergies, habits, likes or dislikes.

“Participating in Global Entrepreneurship Week has contributed to my education, and the application of it – in fundamental ways.” Lara Ismail, CUD Student

Interestingly so, post-awards ceremony, the comparison between both jury’s evaluations on the projects were on par – indicating that CUD’s academics and curriculum are in tune and closely aligned to the industry’s needs, strategies, and objectives. 

“As a university, we are responsible to equip our students with a holistic skillset – purposeful theory which is practically applied to meet the demands of the future.” Prof. Naveed Yasin, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Head of Entrepreneurship and the Creative Industries

Of course, Global Entrepreneurship Week and similar initiatives tailored for the CUD community can only be as successful as the team leading it. Prof. Naveed Yasin, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Head of Entrepreneurship and the Creative Industries, is a pioneering ambassador of entrepreneurship at CUD. His achievements have been rewarded through several accolades. 

“Anyone can become an entrepreneur.” Prof. Naveed Yasin, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Head of Entrepreneurship and the Creative Industries

Prof. Naveed’s most recent research is featured in a book on entrepreneurship education, called Entrepreneurship and Change, Understanding Entrepreneurialism as a Driver of Transformation (edited by Denis Hyams-Ssekasi & Frederick Agboma) – in the chapter ‘exploring the enterprise landscape for business incubators in the UAE’:  “The United Arab Emirates is on course to have successfully developed an effective entrepreneurial ecosystem that promotes not only the quantity, but also the quality of business start-ups.” 

Prof. Naveed is an elite global researcher. His study on immigrant entrepreneurship has been published in the Journal of Small Business Economics, regarded as the world’s number one journal in the field. Prof. Naveed conducted the study in collaboration with Prof. Khalid Hafeez of De Montfort University, United Kingdom (UK). The subject stems from Prof. Naveed’s Ph.D. research and explores the institutional contexts and their influences on migrant entrepreneurship in the UK, Denmark, and Norway. The full research paper can be accessed via the publisher, Springer at: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11187-022-00656-z This places the CUD professor among the world’s foremost academics for scholarly significance in entrepreneurship.

“Don’t underestimate any opportunity that comes your way. It might be the key to the next.”  Suhina Mayet, CUD Student 
 

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