Fostering New Talent for Intelligent Transformation
In Oman Vision 2040, the Oman government listed "improving education, scientific research, and national strength" as a top national development priority. Five key objectives are outlined: Establish universities for technology and the applied sciences, promote vocational and technical education in primary-level education, encourage investment in education, launch partnership initiatives between the private sector and schools, and strengthen national capabilities through skills development to support economic growth.
As an important ICT partner of Oman, Huawei's talent development strategy helps improve education and scientific research within the country. Huawei, as a global leader in ICT infrastructure and smart devices, has been actively contributing to Oman's ICT talent development strategy. Collaborating with universities in Oman, Huawei has established ICT Academies and continuously deepens these partnerships to create a comprehensive talent supply chain, covering learning, certification, and employment. By April 2022, the Huawei ICT Academy, which helps students learn key ICT skills, has benefited over 5,000 students in Oman, significantly contributing to the nation's digital talent development.
MTCIT Talent Development Plan
Since the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology (MTCIT) of Oman launched the Makeen strategy for digital capability development, tens of thousands of Omani youth have embarked on their ICT journeys. The Makeen strategy consists of four modules: youth enablement, ICT training path, MOU cooperation with the private sector, and women in technology. For the ICT development path, the initiative proposes to provide professional certification support to motivate ICT experts and specialists and help them improve their competitiveness in the job market. Huawei is a proud partner of this initiative.
MTCIT and Huawei also jointly organized the Huawei ICT Competition — Middle East and Central Asia, which has grown to become the largest ICT competition and talent exchange event in the region. Since its launch in 2017, more than 100,000 students in the Middle East and Central Asia have participated in this competition.
Figure 1: 7th Huawei ICT Competition Middle East Regional Final
In December 2022, with the strong support of the royal family of Oman, Huawei, MTCIT, and Omantel jointly held the 7th Huawei ICT Competition Middle East and Central Asia Regional Final in Muscat (Figure 1). That year's competition attracted more than 19,300 students from 472 universities in countries including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Pakistan, and Kazakhstan, setting a new participation record. A total of 45 students from 15 top teams emerged from the national competition and arrived in Oman for the prestigious event.
During the regional final, Oman also held the GCC Ministerial Committee Meeting, which not only helped Oman set its strategic goals for ICT talent development, but also enhanced Oman's international influence. To further promote ICT talent development, the Omani government unveiled the Five-Year Scholarship Incentive at the award ceremony: Over the next five years, Omani students who had obtained Huawei certifications would receive incentive scholarships totaling US$450,000. This initiative not only motivates students to pursue ICT learning, but also helps cultivate ICT talent in Oman. It is expected that this move will play a pivotal role in promoting Oman's intelligent transformation.
Bridging the talent gap
Talent serves as a cornerstone of scientific and technological development, and Oman has consistently prioritized talent recruitment, development, and optimization. In collaboration with Huawei, the two sides use the Huawei ICT Talent Job Fair to amalgamate resources from all parties, building an effective bridge between students and enterprises.
Figure 2: Huawei announces the Eagle Talent Program at the awards ceremony
At the same time, Huawei released the Eagle Talent Program at the regional final (Figure 2), offering internships to contestants. Upon joining Huawei's local company for internships, students will be mentored by Huawei's best experts, who will guide them through honing skills and planning their careers. Students who successfully complete their internship evaluations and oral defenses will be directly recruited by Huawei. This program is a great incentive for ICT-related students in Oman, and the broader Middle East and Central Asia, to join Huawei through their own efforts, to better demonstrate their ICT skills, and to contribute to the intelligent transformation of Oman, the Middle East, and Central Asia.
Empowering women in science and technology
As achieving gender equality is important to overall social development and progress, Oman has been committed to promoting the development of local women in the field of science and technology. The nation actively participates in Huawei Women Developers (HWD) to encourage women to join the technology industry and enhance their competitiveness in the technology sector.
In the Middle East and Central Asia, women's limited participation in the science and technology industry is closely tied to their lower exposure to science curricula in schools. Therefore, women are encouraged to start learning about AI and software during their high school years to prepare for technology-related majors in university.
In addition, it is recognized that women aspire to see more female leaders in the ICT field. Research shows that women possess excellent leadership skills, including motivating employees, building relationships, and taking initiative, which are essential qualities for successful leaders. We firmly believe that women can achieve remarkable success in the field of science and technology.
Through cooperation with Huawei, the hope is that more Omani women will have the opportunity to engage in the technology industry, unlock their potential, and showcase their talent.
From the establishment of Huawei ICT Academy to the Huawei ICT Competition and projects such as the Elite Plan and HWD, the partnership between Oman and Huawei has deep roots. This kind of win-win cooperation has not only enhanced Oman's national strength and economic modernization and diversification, but has also played a positive role in driving future scientific and technological development, establishing Oman as a technology hub in the region.
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