Intel helps students engineer Saudi Arabia’s digital future

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Intel Corporation's vaunted Digital Transformation Initiative for the Middle East reached an important milestone in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with the announcement of an internship programme aimed at some of the Kingdom's brightest science brains.

The King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals in Dhahran has joined hands with Intel to offer its best students special placements at Intel facilities as part of the Intel Engineering Excellence Program. This program will enable Intel and KFUPM to address the needs of skills development and knowledge transfer, which will in turn contribute towards enhancing the overall Professional standing of the KFUPM graduates.

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The Intel Engineering Excellence Program is part of Intel's Digital Transformation Initiative and  the first chapter of this initiative has been launched in the Gulf's largest economy. It helps students in ICT-related fields gain unparalleled work experience and training, provide the building blocks for information-based economies, creating job opportunities and improving competitiveness in the global digital marketplace. It also underscores Intel's long-term commitment to promote technology skills, knowledge transfer and economic development in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the rest of the region.

Running for three to six months, the internships are only open to Saudi Nationals. Intel will offer handpicked students internships at its sites around the world. The internships will be implemented through the KFUPM's Cooperative (COOP) Program, which aims to bolster the practical experience of students prior to graduation and equip them with the necessary vocational skills to excel in the workplace. The Intel Engineering Excellence Program seeks top science and engineering undergraduates, post-graduate and doctorate students whose studies encompass relevant subjects in the Information Communication Technology sphere, such as computer science and engineering, wireless communications, and electrical engineering.

A managing committee will review applications, and a policy specialist will monitor the program to ensure internships match the evolving ICT objectives of the Kingdom. This committee will specify technical areas of interest to guide the selection of students, and the most promising candidates will be picked through a series of interviews. A sophisticated reporting and evaluation structure for the internships will also be put in place. In October 2005, Intel announced its Digital Transformation Initiative for the Middle East, which encompasses programs tailored to improve digital accessibility, education, entrepreneurship, and specialized competencies.

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