The seven day climb – known as WALK (We Are Leaders @ Kilimanjaro) – was part of the EBDA leadership development programme, which is sponsored by Maersk Oil Qatar to test students’ teamwork, perseverance and adaptability under, at times, extreme pressure and difficult weather conditions.
Director of Student Life, HBKU, Ameena Hussain, said:
Congratulations to the ten students from across Education City for successfully completing such a difficult challenge. Climbing Kilimanjaro is one of the world’s most difficult hikes – the students worked together and showed impressive determination and perseverance to complete it in seven days. HBKU Student Life developed this as part of the year one activities for the EBDA leadership programme for the first time this year and it embodies the programme’s focus on experience-based learning. I’m sure the skills and confidence the students gained last week – along with each of their university courses – will stand them in good stead to become accomplished leaders in the future. All the activities developed as part of the EBDA programme include a range of challenges that test the students’ strategy, problem solving, technical skills and physical endurance.’
Students were chosen after demonstrating a commitment and interest in leadership development, along with a track record of overcoming challenges. During the programme, students learned how to work towards their goals, work in a diverse team, and unlock their personal potential.
EBDA, meaning start in Arabic, is sponsored by Maersk Oil Qatar and aims to provide students from Hamad bin Khalifa University’s (HBKU’s) partner universities across Education City and from Qatar University with the skills and knowledge to become leaders in the future. The Kilimanjaro climb was an example of EBDA’s unique focus on providing experience-based learning.
To prepare for this challenge, the ten students went through rigorous training for six weeks at Education City. Commenting on the completion of the WALK challenge, Sheikh Jassim bin Saud Al Thani, Head of Qatarization at Maersk Oil Qatar, and sponsor of EBDA, said:
I am in awe of the students for overcoming such an arduous climb. We are delighted to support this unique leadership-building challenge as part of our wider commitment to develop Qatar’s future leaders. Maersk Oil Qatar is committed to assisting young people in becoming leaders, who will in return contribute to the ongoing growth and development of the State of Qatar in the years to come.’
Hundreds of students have already participated in EBDA activities, such as the LeaderShape Programme, Desert Challenge, and Not Your Average Spring Break. WALK was organised by the Student Affairs Department of HBKU and sponsored by Maersk Oil Qatar.
Concurrent to the WALK challenge, another group of 24 students from Education City completed their own challenge in EBDA’s Not Your Average Spring Break (NYASB), by taking part in a service learning trip to Indonesia for ten days, in partnership with Reach out to Asia (ROTA). Both experiences enabled students to unlock their personal potential and learn unforgettable lessons in leadership and the importance of effective team work.
EBDA is a tailor-made leadership development programme offered to students from across Education City and Qatar University. Launched back in September 2014 in partnership with sponsors Maersk Oil Qatar. The programme has been designed to support the development of high-quality leaders in both the private and public sectors by equipping them with genuine leadership skills and behaviours.