Why real-life experience is crucial for students

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Aden - Yasmin Abdel Azim - It's critical for universities to develop life-ready graduates with soft and hard skills Image Credit: Shutterstock

Employability of graduates is key when choosing a higher education institution. The link between a university education, and better employment, career and business opportunities, is of great importance. Universities should endeavour to provide the necessary skills to succeed during and after every learner’s university years.

For the American University in (AUD), employability is not only about being employed, but also about being leaders in their communities and their fields —who are doing what they have passion for, who are ready to be influential and productive in the community and the market place, and who have developed their own businesses offering employment opportunities to others. At AUD, we strive to develop life-ready graduates with soft and hard skills, and who should not be disrupted by a disruption.

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At AUD, we believe that a university journey is one of real-life experience, internship and mentorship that engages learners in a learning experience that propels them to be life-ready.

- Dr Imad Y Hoballah, Provost and Chief Academic Officer of American University in Dubai (AUD)

At AUD, we believe that a university journey is one of real-life experience, internship and mentorship that engages learners in a learning experience that propels them to be life-ready.

Learners are prepared through individualised hands-on experiential learning journeys and solid collaborations with the industry and other educational institutions, mentorships, and internships with the necessary hard skills and soft skills to stand out, shine, and create the future.

Entrepreneurship and innovation are at the heart of creating a creativity lab that allows the learners to regularly empathise, define, ideate, inspire, pilot, test and accelerate.

AUD continues to renew and recreate the curricula with its industry partners around theoretical concepts while linking them to real-world applications to help the learners utilise their knowledge and critical thinking skills to navigate their career journey.

Be life ready

AUD engages the learners on a rigorous learning journey that is not limited to academics, but starting with a personalised admission process, and it develops through foundation studies, and continues through skills grades or degrees. We endeavour to address the learners’ individual needs, future potential, talent, skills, and requirements for success and being life-ready.

Most importantly, at AUD, we first focus on untangling the mindset of the learners and giving the necessary experience and tools to be prepared with innovator’s mindsets and design thinking. These learners believe that intelligence and talents grow, and they are ready to take on challenges, take risks and not fear failure, and positively take criticism as part of the excellence journey. At AUD, we seek to prepare the learner to be agile, empathetic, creative, observant, reflective, connected, curious, empathetic, analytic, and problem finder as well as solver.

— The writer is Provost and Chief Academic Officer of American University in Dubai (AUD)

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