Business Wire India

  • Added benefits to international students include free COVID-19 vaccinations, option to sponsor family members and preparation to join a global business environment after graduation
  • The Edge combines cutting-edge tools and hands-on mentoring from a team of international experts who use scientific assessment to take students from classroom to boardroom
  • Program available to all newly enrolled first-year students at UOWD at no additional cost
  • The 12-month program requires an investment of only 30 hours and will be delivered over online sessions, on-campus workshops, coaching groups and webinars
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) continues to pioneer new approaches to attract professional excellence, expertise, and talent from around the world. The country’s recent response to the pandemic, with the second highest immunization numbers in the world, has set records globally. As part of the ongoing vaccination drives, students coming to the country will be eligible for free COVID-19 vaccinations, upon receiving their student residency visa.

In January 2021, the gulf country, also approved an amendment to its residency laws allowing foreign university students to bring their families with them to the UAE. As per the recent amendment, foreign students studying at one of UAE’s many universities now have the option of bringing their families to the country to live with them.
In a bid to create a truly global workforce, University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD), the first international university and the highest-ranked Australian university in the UAE, announced the launch of its new career readiness program, The Edge.

Free for all newly enrolled first-year students, the first offering of its kind in the region combines cutting-edge tools from the world of business, coaching, psychometrics and behavioural science with hands-on mentoring from international experts. The 12-month program aims to boost student employability and prepare them for their future career paths.

According to the World Bank, the coronavirus pandemic and shutdown measures plunged the global economy into a severe contraction, resulting in the worst recession since World War II. With students graduating into an increasingly competitive job landscape, employers seek candidates who are ready for the modern workplace, possessing skills that go beyond the academic curriculum, such as critical thinking, problem-solving and soft skills.

Andy Phillips, Chief Operating Officer of UOWD, said: “We are the first university in the Middle East to introduce an innovative career readiness program that transcends the conventional aspects, such as CV preparation, interview techniques and internship placement, to equip its participants with skills and knowledge to navigate the evolving work environment. In addition to helping students find their career path, the unique program involves elements of self-discovery, mentorship and behavioural science – all of which are necessary for personal and professional growth. The Edge integrates into the students’ university timetables and requires an investment of only 30 hours from their side.”

The Edge has been embedded into the fabric of each degree at UOWD, and will be delivered over online sessions, on-campus workshops, coaching groups and webinars.

The program consists of four must-have pillars that are headed by six world-class experts: John Gage, behavioural expert and Founder of Agency People; serial entrepreneur Jon Duschinsky, voice, speech and communications coach Ausar Stewart; Nima Abu Wardeh, journalist and broadcaster of BBC World’s Middle East Business Report, and Oliver Blofeld and James Mullan, Managing Partners of Insight Media.

Speaking on the program, Gage said: “I’m very excited to be involved in The Edge – it’s an excellent program that will help this generation to truly fulfil its potential, and give students insights about themselves and their professional lives that most people only realise in their 50’s or 60’s. A key focus of the program is using scientifically recognised tests, such as the Thomas International Personal Profile Analysis that evaluates whether a student’s choice of degree matches their personality, allowing them to know if they’re on the right career path before they graduate.

“Results from the pilot phase of the program suggest that students have found the reports very insightful and the discussion with the coaches extremely helpful.”

The mentors involved in The Edge will bring expert knowledge to students in fields such as communication coaching, entrepreneurship, personal branding, human behaviour and personal objective setting, and assess their aptitude through scientific techniques, including psychometric testing and personality profiling.

The Edge also deep-dives into important themes, such as equality, diversity, inclusion and bias, empowering students to be their own spokespersons and agents of change, and to advocate for themselves in today’s modern business environment.
UOWD is committed to making a significant contribution to the local higher education community by equipping its students with valuable knowledge and insights, reflecting the university’s ongoing pursuit of excellence in teaching, research, industry engagement and student experience. For more information on The Edge, please visit


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