What were the objectives behind the establishment of ADVETI in 2007?
ADVETI is one of two operators in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi under the umbrella of the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ACTVET), the second operator being the Institute of Applied Technology (IAT). The idea behind the establishment of ADVETI was to train and provide UAE nationals with the skills required for employment that go beyond the essential technical skills and competencies required by a specific occupation. For example, mechanical engineering technicians need to be able to do more than simply handle technical aspects of a job such as the assembly and disassembly of a piece of equipment or machinery, they must also be able to communicate effectively, both in writing and orally. Occupational skills are vital.
How do you develop your programs to meet the needs of industry and the greater economy?
In building our programs and curricula, we refer to the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and target those sectors identified as critical for the economy of Abu Dhabi. Sectors identified as major players in a knowledge-based economy are the ones addressed by our programs. As a result, we target the oil and gas industry and also energy and power generation. Currently, we are working with the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) on a program to develop the nuclear professionals they require. Media is another key industry identified in the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, and we have built close relationships with the major employers in that sector. We offer a program in creative media production, for example, to equip UAE nationals for the needs of that industry. We partner with all major industries in the media, energy, government, and steel and aluminium manufacturing sectors, at both local and federal levels. For example, there is a huge demand for inspection professionals at Abu Dhabi Municipality. This is a new occupation that the Municipality wants to Emiratize, ranging across business inspection, safety inspection, health inspections, electrics, and so on.
What are some of the key areas of cooperation you have with other institutions?
As a training provider, we do not limit ourselves to just one training partner. We work not only with TAFE, but also with BTEC from the UK, which is more familiar to the oil and gas industry. For logistics management, our partner is the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT). We are also now developing programs with the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (ClPS) for procurement training. Our strategy is to approach the best training and professional bodies and partner with them. We assess their training packages and the needs of the industry, and incorporate that knowledge into our programs. Of course, in order to deliver their training programs tailored for our market, we obtain prior permission and agreement from the qualification owners to undergo our own customizations, and then present them to the employers. Once everyone is in agreement, we sign an MoU in order to secure sponsorship for the students in these programs. Creative Media Production is an example of a BTEC program offered by Edexcel, one of the major training awarding bodies in the UK. In 2013, we signed an MoU with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). Emirates Steel is another of our partners and we are also involved with the Federal Electricity and Water Authority, akin to the Abu Dhabi Water and Electrical Authority, but at federal level. Overall, we have already signed some 32 MoUs. They are generally of three to five years duration, after which they are reassessed.