The University of Manchester Middle East Centre and Dubai Business Women Council sign Strategic Talent Management Partnership to support and develop women at work



The Middle East Centre of The University of Manchester, one of the world’s leading universities, and Dubai Business Women Council – the UAE’s leading platform for the personal and professional development of businesswomen in Dubai -  have signed an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) for a Strategic Talent Management Partnership to support businesswomen in Dubai and the UAE. The agreement was signed by Nadine Halabi, Business Development Manager of DBWC, and Randa Bessiso, Director – Middle East, The University of Manchester.

The new agreement between DBWC and the University will focus on promoting access to higher and professional education opportunities, practice development, research opportunities and live projects, supported by networking and career services to enrich the learning experience for students of the University and members of DBWC. The University’s Strategic Talent Management Partnership programme provides a framework for active collaboration with professional and industry bodies as well as enterprises and other organisations. The Middle East Centre works in collaboration with a range of regional and international professional and industry bodies.

The University of Manchester Middle East Centre attracts large numbers of working professionals to its portfolio of flexible, blended learning part-time master’s programmes, including businesswomen. Professional women typically account for around 16% of the students on The University’s flagship Global Part-time MBA (GMBA) programme – named the Best MBA Programme in the region by Forbes Middle East in 2019. Since 2006, the centre has supported over 2,800 GMBA students and graduated 1,700 from the region. The first regional cohort of students on the University’s new blended learning part-time MA Educational Leadership in Practice programme, launched in September 2020, comprised more than 80% female education professionals.

DBWC is the UAE’s leading platform for the personal and professional development of businesswomen in the Emirate of Dubai, providing education, training and networking opportunities to aid in meeting the career aspirations of UAE-based business women (both Emirati and expatriates), as well as inspiring and encouraging women to play their role in society and the economy. DBWC supports business and professional women in increasing their contribution to the economy and the productivity of both Dubai and the UAE and role in promoting and shaping economic development across all sectors and areas of the business community.

“The partnership with renowned and global educational institutes such as The University of Manchester Middle East Centre is in line with the Council’s ongoing effort to support businesswomen and entrepreneurs in Dubai. We are committed to help them overcome the current challenges while contributing to their professional success by collaborating with organizations who share the same mission and objectives. Working in the business environment in Dubai requires exceptional skills due to the high competitiveness that makes the business environment special. With that in mind, we will continue to take into consideration all the best internationally adopted practices in the field of training and mentorship which will enable the business women in our network to keep learning and to keep developing their skill set,” said Nadine Halabi, Business Development Manager – Dubai Business Women Council.

Randa Bessiso, Director – Middle East at The University of Manchester, added: “Dubai and the UAE are in the vanguard of promoting women’s interests and the University shares DBWC’s goals of promoting and supporting women in business. We aim to encourage more women to develop the skills, network and confidence they need to move into more influential and visible leadership roles, and to help all women build more sustainable and fulfilling careers. We have a fantastic pool of female talent in the UAE and we know our female students are generally top performers, collaborative and often involved in business with a strong social dimension. Working together with DBWC, we aim to help connect more professional women, share success stories and create the role models vital to inspiring others.”

The Middle East Centre has developed into the largest and fastest-growing centre in the University’s international network of six global centres. The University of Manchester was named as the world’s 27th best university in the QS World University Rankings, sixth in the UK, and eighth in Europe. The University was named the most targeted institution by the UK’s top 100 graduate employers for the third year in a row by The Graduate Market in 2020. Manchester was also named the University of the Year for Graduate Employment by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020.

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