Abu Dhabi, UAE, January 5, 2012: More than double the total number of students that participated in last year’s event is expected to attend the annual Masdar-hosted event this year. All seven emirates will be represented by students from middle school to college/university level.
“The wise leadership of the UAE has made education a pillar to the long-term success of the nation,” said Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, CEO of Masdar. “Today, the UAE is a leading energy producer, and for us to maintain this role, our future energy leaders must be innovators in new forms of the value chain in order to develop a diverse mix of energy sources.”
“Our leadership’s view is that our future prosperity is dependent on the investment of our human capital. It is Masdar’s mandate to ensure that the UAE’s youth are informed about and encouraged to join this new upcoming sector. I’m confident in our future, as the UAE is poised to continue its strong contribution to the world,” added Dr. Al Jaber.
Over the course of the conference, students will be offered the opportunity to roam around the exhibition and speak with leaders from various energy companies. Students will also be able to attend exclusive panel sessions where they will be exposed to global industry experts addressing a number of critical issues, including water conservation, energy efficiency, climate change and clean technology development.
Aida Al Busaidy, Manager of internal and online communications at Masdar said: “Following the success of last year’s engagement with the youth and the increased demand for further participation, we saw fit to expand our reach and invite more students. Our key focus this year is to engage the students with major players in the industry and ensure they leave with a well-rounded experience. It is crucial that our youth understand the importance of sustainable living and are inspired to pursue careers in math and science.”
A key element of WFES is the Young Future Energy Leaders (YFEL) program. This unique program, led by Masdar Institute, helps mentor future leaders in the fields of alternative energy by engaging them with the leaders of today. Entry into the program is selective and highly competitive. Prospective candidates, from the UAE and around the world, need to demonstrate not only interest in future energy and sustainable development but display their ability to make a real and ongoing contribution at the highest level.
Masdar is also partnering with Vestas on a competition for YFEL participants called ‘The Paper & Bolts’ event - a project management and engineering workshop where contestants will be given everyday items, such as A4 paper, nuts, bolts and sticky tape to construct a wind turbine. Each team must estimate the amount of weight their turbine will be able to lift and the height it will reach. The team will then construct the turbine, and at the end each model will be tested using a fan. The highest-scoring team in each criterion will be the winner.
Furthermore, Masdar’s commitment to youth engagement goes beyond hosting them at WFES. Masdar has partnered with various organisations and government entities over the past five years to develop and promote youth initiatives. For example, last summer, Masdar collaborated with Advanced Technology Investment Company (ATIC) to sponsor key activities during the three-week ATIC ‘Summer of Semiconductors’ program. Organised in collaboration with The American University of Sharjah, The AMD Foundation, Creative Kids Academy and the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC), the summer program was designed to introduce Abu Dhabi’s leading young talent to the field of advanced technologies and nurture further development.
Held in Abu Dhabi over the past four years, the World Future Energy Summit promotes innovation, global collaboration and investment opportunities in renewable energy and clean technology. Hosted by Masdar, WFES is a symbol of Abu Dhabi’s strategic focus to discover and commercialize the technologies that will power a cleaner tomorrow.