Under the patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research and Chancellor of the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT), Provost Dr. Marshall Drummond inaugurated today the 8th Counselling Arabia Conference at Dubai Women’s College (DWC).
With the theme “Illuminate: Inspiring People, Opening Minds”, Counselling Arabia is broader that just counselling and discussions but will focus on new developments and inspirational models in the field of counselling.
As one of the region’s foremost events, Counselling Arabia is designed for professionals and students working or studying in the field of career counselling, education, academic advising, special needs, social work, human resources, employee development, and coaching.
National and regional experts will discuss progressive and innovative trends in the emerging markets thus helping students and other participants make educational, training and occupational choices and manage their careers.
Dr. Howard Reed, Director of Dubai Women’s College welcomed the opportunity to once again host this International Conference at the DWC Campus, having hosted the very first Counselling Arabia Conference back in 2003.
“This important Conference aims to promote excellence, innovation and continuous quality improvement in the field of counseling and develop community awareness of the value of counselling and career development across the Gulf Region,” he said.
The three-day conference includes workshops, presentations and training programs, bringing together key professionals to discuss and develop innovative concepts in counselling practices across the region.
Rabia Bekhazi, Supervisor of DWC Career Centre, said: “Dubai Women’s College hosting of the 8th Counselling Arabia conference will provide DWC students, graduates and staff with the chance to interact with professionals in counselling fields including academic advising, and career and employee development.
“Mutual knowledge on this occasion will allow the best counselling practices, which comprise Emiratization programs and investment in the career development in the emerging labour market.”
Rabia pointed out that the counselling topic is one of the top priorities at Dubai Women’s College to help students achieve leadership and distinction in their fields and future careers.
“The conference this year brings together a large number of professionals in the field of counseling and advising as around 65 speakers will address it. This gives students and staff the opportunity for interaction and learning,” she added.
Rabia stressed the importance of Counselling Arabia Conference, the scope of which has expanded and developed in the Arabian region over the past years.
“This emanates from the fact that the counselling service is an important tool for advanced human development in all human domains of activities, and that having specialists in this field has become necessary for us to lead a healthy and productive life,” she added.
Some of the topics of the research that will be discussed at Counselling Arabia 2010 include career choices made by Emirati women, Career Interest tool developed specifically for the UAE presented in English and Arabic, Personality Dimensions in Arabia, the creation of an Academic Advising Centre in the UAE and Emirati graduate employment.
Along with these discussions on innovations and current local research, Counselling Arabia 2010 will also offer information on UAE National Training programs, aligning the UAE Nationals work expectations with the needs of the labour market (English and Arabic), and numerous other culturally specific topics.
Conference keynote speaker, Shawn Achor who presented the Ripple Effect of Emotional Contagion in the workplace stated: “Counselling Arabia is about helping people achieve their potential, which is exactly what positive psychology research aims to study.
“My research shows that instead of waiting for success to be happy, if you train your brain to be positive and optimistic first, success rates rise dramatically. Intelligence is only one portion of success; to achieve our full potential, we must develop the belief that our behavior matters, create positive social support networks, and train our brains to see stress as a challenge instead of a threat.”
Daryl Simourd, DWC Career Advisor said, “The annual Counselling Arabia conference is a valuable opportunity for professionals to gather to network, share and learn. This year’s program includes discussions of several studies recently conducted in the UAE. This is incredibly exciting because of the lack of published papers specific to the culture and environment of the UAE.”