In a ceremony held under the patronage of His Excellency the Minister of Education and Higher Education, Dr Mohamed Abdul Wahed al-Hammadi, at Salwa Ballroom in Sheraton Hotel, the Qatar Finance and Business Academy (QFBA), and Northumbria University (NU), one of the United Kingdom’s leading educational establishments, crowned a year of their successful joint academic partnership with the graduation of the partnership’s first BA (HONS) in International Banking and Finance cohort. Joining this landmark occasion was His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed Bin Hamad Al-Thani, Deputy Governor of the Qatar Central Bank.
The QFBA-Northumbria (QFBA-NU) University partnership, signed in June 2018, offers bachelor’s degrees for high school graduates pursuing finance and finance-related majors, as well as professionals already holding diplomas in the banking and financial fields, and topping up new or higher academic accreditations in their career development tracks. During the ceremony, the program’s first cohort of 23 graduating students obtained their BA (HONS) degrees in International Banking and Finance.
Opening the ceremony, Dr. Khalid Mohamed Al-Horr, CEO of QFBA, commented on the partnership:
“Since the very start, we had a firm belief and trust in that this strong partnership would reverberate with profound, positive impact on Qatar’s academic landscape, and usher in a golden era for the youth who want to pursue a career in finance.
“When we joined forces with Northumbria University, we were able to sharpen our focus on academic and talent development, and on the delivery of specialized competency building degree programs, through advanced curricula. Professionals enrolled in these courses were offered access to world-class education, and, equally, to the guidance and expertise from the brightest minds in financial fields; a learning experience that enabled them to keep pace with the market’s latest developments, and obtain academic degrees and accreditations,” he added.
Students and professionals enrolled in the QFBA-NU University, Qatar, accessed a full-fledged learning track in, focally, Accounting, Finance and Investment Management, and International Banking and Finance. This first academic year of the program saw the registration of 64 students. Out of the total number of students admitted into the program’s courses – representing 15 nationalities – 60% were Qatari nationals.
Professor Peter Francis, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Northumbria University, added:
“Graduation is the highlight of a university’s academic year, and I congratulate each and every one of these new graduates on their personal achievement and success. As the first cohort of QFBA-Northumbria students, their success also represents a milestone for our partnership, and a confirmation of our shared values and ambitions. Together with QFBA we are providing a learning experience that encourages students to develop the critical ability to question, challenge and innovate – and to become global graduates.
“As graduates in International Banking and Finance I have no doubts that this cohort, and those that follow, will be instrumental in Qatar’s development as an international financial hub. I am also extremely proud of what has been accomplished so far with QFBA and look forward to deepening our collaboration further in the future.”
Counting 35,000 students, Northumbria University is one of the largest public Universities in the United Kingdom, ranked ninth in the nation by number of Bachelor’s degree and Higher education graduates. Northumbria has also cemented its footing among the top ten universities in the UK by number of graduates entering professional employment: 9 out of 10 Northumbria graduates join the advanced ranks of the workforce within six months of their graduation. Equally, the institution ranks 4th in the nation by number of graduate students who set up their own start-ups.
The Northumbria University in Qatar recently opened admission applications for degree majors in Accounting, Finance and Investments, and International Banking and Finance, with the blessing and approval of Qatar’s Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
Moreover, its strategic partnership with QFBA will see the expansion of the university’s facilities to a new campus in Musheireb, and the launch of the QFBA NU Business Clinic. Located at the Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, the clinic’s academic curriculum will offer students access to firsthand experience with real business environments; under which they will, effectively, form ‘consultancy firm’ task forces to provide added-value business advice for in-market clients. These services will be availed to multinationals, SMEs, social enterprises, charities, as well as not-for-profit organizations.
“The challenges that were recently thrown our way as a nation were a motive for us to reexamine the talent development and training needs of the local market, in line with its fast-evolving dynamics. In this context, we are pursuing with our efforts to equip and build up a talent pool that is ready, willing and able to integrate in the job market today, and in the future,” concluded Dr. Al Horr in his ceremony speech.
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