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Saudi Women Excelling in the Fields of STEM

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More girls in the Kingdom are choosing an education in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), they are excelling in the majors. However, one challenge facing them at the moment is not finding jobs related to their fields.

Dr. Fatima Alakeel, a cybersecurity expert and faculty member at King Saud University (KSU) in Riyadh, says that: “In the Kingdom, STEM-related jobs are limited at the moment, as the economy is primarily oil-based and there are few technical jobs available.”

Dr. Fatima Alakeel, cybersecurity expert.

Alakeel is also the founder and CEO of the non-profit Confidentiality, Integrity & Availability Group (CIAG), which focuses on information security training and research in Riyadh.

“We have more girls in STEM education compared to Western countries.”

What is even more impressive is that 57 percent of undergraduates for the year 2015-2016 in the Kingdom were revealed to be girls, and in the same year, women outnumbered men in graduating with a bachelor’s in biology, mathematics, information technology (IT) statistics, and physics. According to a report done by the Saudi Education Ministry.

It’s great seeing how in today’s Saudi Arabia, parents are becoming more encouraging to their daughters and pushing them into getting a degree in male dominant majors, and to study not just in the kingdom but outside in Western universities if needed. Things are definitely looking up for women as day by day, they’re becoming a more crucial part of the development of Saudi Arabia.

The only challenge right now that the government is trying hard to solve, is securing job opportunities for STEM graduates, and it’s only a matter of time until the government succeeds in doing so; as per the vision of 2030. Because based on the Kingdom’s 2030 Vision, there will be indeed more jobs, that includes technical ones, once this is achieved, women will of course have their fair share.

“We’re glad to see Her Royal Highness Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud becoming the first female ambassador of the country. It only suggests change is on the way,” Alakeel said.

22 year-old Maha Al-Taleb, a graduate with a degree in technology from KSU, specializing in IT networks and security, told Arab News: “Saudi women are ambitious. We’re acquiring high degrees and seeking successful careers. I don’t know why the world assumes that Saudi women are a backward tribal species who have no say in these matters. This entire perception is flawed.”

And this couldn’t be more true, because ever since the Vision served to support them, Saudi women had been proving their capabilities in the different fields that they were taken part in, and their success is apparent and impressive throughout the past years.

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Lifestyle

Women of Saudi Arabia Can Now Join the Military

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The foreign ministry has announced that Saudi women can now join the military and serve as private first class, corporal or sergeant. I mean talk about gender equality!

Just when we though easing regulations on Saudi women can’t get any better, the ministry surprises us all with such shocking yet incredible news.

According to Sky News, roles have been opened in Saudi’s land forces, royal navy, royal air forces, royal Saudi air defense forces and medical services for armed forces.

The ministry stated a number of conditions for applicants who are willing to join the army, these conditions are in regard to age, nationality, in addition to the physical and professional competence.

Heba Al Otaiba, director of strategic communications at the UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, took it to Twitter to congratulate the Kingdom on such a brave decision.

“Great news. I look forward to watching Saudi Arabia’s women, lead across many industries, including serving in the country’s military.” The tweet read.

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Saudi Arabia Launches A Contest For Aspiring Filmmakers With Prizes Up to SR40 million

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The Ministry of Culture just announced the launch of a new competition on Sunday entitled ‘Daw‘ which aims to support Saudi films, and also empower aspiring and rising filmmakers.

The competition will be divided into four tracks that include supporting and developing screenwriting and supporting film production and films of Saudi students majoring in film-making at international institutes and universities.

Entries will be evaluated by specialized juries who have experience in choosing winning films projects, and winners will be announced next year in February.

Prizes are up to SR40 million as it is all part of the ministry’s plan of showing tremendous support to Saudi talents majoring in filmmaking by providing such a huge funding platform.

The competition will support young filmmakers in every possible way by providing the needed assistance in producing the films and also creating a production infrastructure and making their career path clear for those interested in different fields of cinema.

Whether you are a filmmaker or a producer, you can participate in the competition online through this link. It just opened yesterday and will remain open till December 29th to give the chance to more people to apply.

 

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Saudi National Day Marks the Start of work on World’s Most Ambitious Project NEOM

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Saudi National Day marked the beginning of work on the $500 billion futuristic mega-city NEOM, located deep in a desert bordering the Red Sea of the Kingdom’s Northwest.

Described as “the world’s most ambitious project,” the city is expected to be 33 times bigger than New York and it is getting established from scratch!

Nadhmi Al-Nasr, CEO of the project, congratulated King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on the occasion of Saudi National day as he announced the start of implementation of the mega project.

“The work on NEOM Bay Airport is complete and the development of labor compounds that will contribute to the growth of the project is now launched, in addition to equipping the residential and administrative area for NEOM employees who will be moving there.”

“We are pleased to announce that NEOM has almost finalized the establishment of strategic plans for this project and its various economic sectors, and we are ready to begin their actual implementation.”  “We are willing to work day and night, so that the coming year, 2020, will be the beginning of the actual momentum of the NEOM projects, embodying the Saudi endeavor to build a promising future for the country.” Al-Nasr added.

We hope this aligns with the plan of completing phase 1 by 2020, with the final brick laid in 2025.

Neom is a portmanteau of the Greek word neos, meaning mostakbal, the Arabic word for “future.”

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