RIYADH: The Study UK Alumni Awards took center stage Wednesday night as British Ambassador Simon Collis announced the winners in three categories at a gala ceremony he hosted at his residence in the Diplomatic Quarters.
Dr. Yousef Alshammari won the professional achievement award, Dr. Talal Al-Maghrabi received the entrepreneurial award, and Arab News Editor-in-Chief Faisal J. Abbas won the social impact award.
The awards were organized by the British Council and British Embassy in Saudi Arabia.
“I believe that UK’s alumni are great ambassadors for my country,” said Collis at the ceremony. “In Britain we welcome international talent, and are delighted that a UK education has enriched lives around the world, including over 100,000 Saudi students.”
He added that the knowledge, institutional networks and personal friendships that alumni bring home last a lifetime. “I congratulate all the finalists as well as the winners tonight. Their hard work and use of their UK education to shape the future of Saudi Arabia is inspiring.”
Amir Ramzan, British Council director in Saudi Arabia, said: “A huge congratulations to the winners of this year’s award. Selecting the finalists was incredibly difficult.”
He added that there are many outstanding alumni achieving in their communities and country.
“As Saudi Arabia makes strides to implement Vision 2030, UK graduates will continue to have an important role to play in transferring skills, creating new jobs and driving innovation, and we hope these stories will inspire the next generation,” he said.
Collis, in consultation with Ramzan, selected Nadia Bakhurji to receive the ambassador’s award 2017 in recognition of her achievement and contribution to her profession and to Saudi Arabia. She is a successful architect and trailblazer for women in education, engineering and industry.
The Study UK Alumni Awards 2017 in Saudi Arabia received over 140 applications, of which nine finalists were selected via a competitive process. The awards were presented by last year’s winners in each category.
The aim of the awards is to demonstrate the impact that a UK education can have on individuals worldwide, and to inspire others to reach their potential by studying in the UK.
This year, the awards are being held in 14 locations: Egypt, Ghana, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Turkey and the US.
Legendary shoe designer and UK alumnus Prof. Jimmy Choo, OBE, is global ambassador of the awards. At the ceremony in Saudi Arabia, all finalists this year said their education was transformational, expanding their vision and equipping them with skills that are crucial to their success and careers.
To be eligible to apply, UK alumni must be living in Saudi Arabia after completing their higher education in the UK within the last 15 years.
The Study UK Alumni Awards was created by the British Council and UK higher-education institutions.
Source: Arab News