Masdar empowers young women in sustainability, renewable energy


Now in its fourth year, more than 70 young women representing 17 nationalities have graduated from the WiSER Pioneers Programme…

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

Masdar on Wednesday announced that 23 graduates successfully completed its annual Women in Sustainability, Environment, and Renewable Energy (WiSER) Pioneers Programme, which empowers women aged 25 to 35 to lead sustainable change in their communities and careers.

Now in its fourth year, more than 70 young women representing 17 nationalities have graduated from the WiSER Pioneers Programme, including this year’s 23 graduates, all of whom successfully completed more than 20 hours of educational and skills-training workshops and over 100 hours of one-on-one mentorship sessions.

The programme is part of Masdar’s broader WiSER initiative, which launched in 2015 on the sidelines of the 70th UN General Assembly to inspire women and girls to play a more active, coequal role in the global energy transition, in line with both the United Arab Emirates’ strategic net-zero initiative and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Dr Lamya Fawwaz, Masdar Executive Director of Brand & Strategic Initiatives, and WiSER Programme Director, said, “By training, upskilling and creating mentorship opportunities for talented young women, the WiSER Pioneers Programme empowers future generations of women to become sustainability leaders in their communities, workplaces and around the world, which is critical to meeting the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.”

WiSER Advisory Council Member, Co-Chair of UN-Energy, and CEO and Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Sustainable Energy for All, Damilola Ogunbiyi, said, “Through my involvement with WiSER, I am proud to play a part in empowering women to become leaders in our sustainable energy future and I look forward to the positive impact these graduates will make.”

WiSER Pioneer, Farah Al Sayegh, said, “The WiSER Pioneers Programme gave me the opportunity to learn directly from world-class experts, industry leaders, innovators and change-makers, fostering the real-world experience and robust global network I will need to make a meaningful difference.”

The WiSER Pioneers Programme is a year-long program offering young women aged 25 to 35 access to bespoke educational workshops and global networking opportunities with industry experts, creating leaders with an entrepreneurial mindset who are prepared to shape a more sustainable world.

Masdar’s Youth 4 Sustainability (Y4S) global initiative has recently launched an online platform, SkillUP, to equip one million young people by 2030 with the knowledge and skills necessary to fight climate change in their communities, schools, and workplaces, in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Under the patronage of Sheikh Khaled Bin Mohamed Bin Zayed, Member of Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office, Masdar, a global leader in renewable energy projects, launched Y4S in 2020 to empower future generations of local and global sustainability leaders.

The newly launched Y4S SkillUP platform harnesses the appeal of a gamified mobile app to engage young people in the fight against climate change by offering them accessible, self-paced opportunities to develop skills critical to achieving the SDGs, while also enhancing their employability in a transitioning global economy.

Dr Lamya Nawaf Fawwaz, Masdar Executive Director of Brand and Strategic Initiatives, said, “Empowering young people to become sustainability champions is the core mission for Y4S as we at Masdar recognise that young people have significant untapped potential to drive sustainable change, and it’s critical that we educate and prepare them now to meaningfully contribute to our global energy transition. Masdar is expanding our renewable energy portfolio across more than 40 countries and works through Y4S, one of our strategic initiatives, to engage students and young professionals wherever they are, and in ways they find compelling, which is why SkillUp’s globally accessible, mobile platform is so promising.”

By leveraging the latest in educational technology, the Y4S SkillUp platform provides 42 hours of self-paced learning and engagement opportunities, from video presentations to information materials, activity sheets, and interactive quizzes all of which centre around the more than 20 specific skills identified in Y4S’s Future Skills 2030 Report as being relevant and necessary to achieving the SDGs.

SkillUp users can complete specific courses to earn certificates for each of the 20+ skills, which span five broad categories: knowledge, personal, people, cognitive, and design thinking. Within each category, focus areas include STEM knowledge, critical reasoning, digital fluency, innovative thinking, collaborative mindset, new media literacy, ecological ethos, entrepreneurship, self-promotion, problem-solving, active learning, resilience, and adaptability, cross-cultural competency, leadership, people management, communication, emotional intelligence, social intelligence, public speaking, sense-making, interpretive skills, design thinking, and creativity.



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