Qatar Petrochemical Company (QAPCO) and the College of the North Atlantic – Qatar (CNA-Q) have signed a ground-breaking agreement to create a Professional Chair of Vocational Studies that will assist in building a strategic roadmap for the future of vocational education in Qatar.

QAPCO’s Vice Chairman and CEO, Dr Mohammed Yousef Al Mulla, described the new Chair as one of the most important educational research initiatives to be implemented in Qatar for many years as the Chair Holder will review, design and implement strategies that will improve the overall quality of future graduates, equipping them with the specific competencies required today in Industry. He stated:

I must thank Dr Ken MacLeod and his team at CNA-Q for sharing our vision and passion for vocational train and for agreeing to collaborate on this new initiative that will, I am sure, provide many benefits for the College, for QAPCO and for Qatar in general.’

The agreement, signed at a ceremony held at CNA-Q on Monday 8 December 2014, aims to improve the quality of vocational training that is delivered by CNA-Q and QAPCO personnel to their students and trainees and will strengthen the knowledge, skills and capacities of practitioners in this field to improve the delivery of current and future programmes. Dr Ken MacLeod CNA-Q’s President emphasised the importance of this position Qatar by saying:

The partnership between CNA-Q and QAPCO has been a long and successful one, and the establishment of the Professional Chair in Vocational Studies is confirmation of our shared vision of the need for, and the potential of, applied learning and vocational training. CNA-Q has become a beacon of excellence in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in Qatar and the region, and we are delighted to be partnering with QAPCO on this initiative, which we think not only has potential to benefit CNA-Q and QAPCO, but is aligned with the goals and aspirations of Qatar National Vision 2030 and the National Development and Education and Training Sector Strategies, and, therefore, has potential to contribute to national priorities in this area.’

The sponsorship of this Chair is part of QAPCO’s innovative Research & Development strategy that focuses on implementing new and innovative ways of developing and supporting the Education Sector within Qatar in line with the country’s National Vision 2030. The scope of the Chair is wide ranging and includes a remit to conduct a review and GAP analysis of current vocational curriculum, to act as an in-house expert and champion of vocational training at CNA-Q and to engage in research that will ensure World-wide best practices are implemented within the Vocational further education sector in Qatar. Dr Al Mulla said:

It also underlies our continued support for the education sector within Qatar and confirms our position as one of the Country’s leading companies for encouraging and nurturing tomorrow’s talent and expertise. This Chair of Vocational Studies will reinforce QAPCO’s commitment to CNA-Q and furthers our strategic goal to support education. We are providing a foundation here and I believe that the future of Qatar and especially the Oil & Gas industry is in safe hands especially when one has two great establishments such as QAPCO and CNA-Q collaborating together and driving research into vocational training forward. We will recruit a leading Global expert in vocational training to this post and will provide all the necessary resources and requirements that will enable this Chair to be the success we all aim and wish for.’

In attendance at the ceremony were Senior Management from QAPCO and CNA-Q including from Yousef Abdulla Rebeeh, QAPCO’s Chief Operations Officer, Ahmad Jamali, Maintenance Manager, Abdulla Ahmad Naji, Learning & Development Manager, Ahmad Yaseen Al Hammadi, Public Affairs & Communication Manager, Mejali Al Kuwari, Head of Qatarization and from CNA-Q Norris Eaton, Vice President – Academic, Shawn Brace, Vice President – Finance & Administration and Shirley Carroll, Associate Vice President – Learner Services. Other special guests included members of the CNA-Q Joint Oversight Board, Ann Marie Vaughan, President, CNA; Ms. Leona Webb, Cheryl Stagg and Troy Mitchell, as well as Qatar members Dr Khalid Mohammed Al Horr, Director of the Higher Education Institute, Supreme Education Council and Dr Abdullatif Al Khal, Director of Medical Education, Hamad Medical Corporation.