QF celebrates 25th anniversary with pride and vision
February 04 2020 11:40 PM
The panel discussion moderated by QF vice chairperson and CEO HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad al-Thani.
The panel discussion moderated by QF vice chairperson and CEO HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad al-Thani.

Qatar Foundation (QF) celebrated its 25th anniversary on Tuesday with a special event named ‘I AM QF’ in the presence of its chairperson Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, whose vision made the organisation achieve astounding success in realising its objectives in education, research, and community development.

The event culminated with a panel discussion moderated by QF vice chairperson and CEO HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad al-Thani. The session reflected on the formation and the journey of QF and the benefits it has brought to Qatar and the world, as well as the road ahead.

The panel was attended by HE the Assistant Foreign Minister and Official Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Lolwah Rashid al-Khater, Public Health Director Sheikh Dr Mohamed bin Hamad al-Thani, Qatar University President Dr Hassan Rashid al-Derham, and ExxonMobil Qatar Vice President and Joint Venture Executive Director Dominic Genetti.

The event, attended by several ministers, dignitaries and QF members - from staff and students to teachers, faculty, and researchers and stakeholders - highlighted what QF has achieved since its establishment in 1995. At the event, Her Highness Sheikha Moza was presented a special gift – letters and pictures containing messages from students at QF’s schools and universities.

Her Highness Sheikha Moza said: “Today I am glad to see faces that have always been present throughout all of QF’s achievements. The main challenge that we faced always was to try convincing others to make a positive change, and that is through education, because education is our true wealth.

“We focused on building our education ecosystem based on our heritage, not against it. And looking at the activities here today, I was pleased to see how proud and confident the Qatari youth are in their culture and identity, and in speaking the Arabic language. This is what we have been aspiring to create through Qatar Foundation, as well as throughout other educational institutions in Qatar.

“It was a dream, and we made it come true through Qatar Foundation and its stakeholders.”

Opening the panel discussion, HE Sheikha Hind highlighted the importance of the power of collaboration.

“QF’s journey has been all about producing knowledge, generating ideas and perspectives, and nurturing talent,” she said. “And we share all of this with the world, from our unique perspective as a nation proud of its Arab and Islamic heritage.

“Now, we’ve reached a milestone in our journey, and so it’s time to ask ourselves: where do we go from here? How do we build on everything we have already achieved? And what do we need to do to realise everything we now want to achieve?

“For QF, I believe the answer rests on all elements of our ecosystem shaping, informing, and benefiting each other. We need to disruptively collaborate in a way that allows everyone to see the big picture, and recognise their role in creating it – because QF is a platform for everyone to engage, and contribute.”

She also explained how collaboration has underpinned QF “from its first day to its 25th year” – from allowing students to cross-register for courses at different universities and advancing autism research, to supporting young Arab innovators, and cultivating young people’s STEM skills."

Al-Khater, highlighting an experience from her professional life involving a student from a QF university, noted how QF has empowered thousands of students through quality education. “Any system, no matter how good it is, relies on input, and the message we send to the world will only ever be as powerful as the substance we have, so the way we continue to deliver quality education and good health services, and the way we conduct research and train and develop people, is the strongest message we have to send abroad,” she explained.

“And when I send this message, the strongest talking-point I have is QF. All the great work being achieved here is not just great work for Qatar, but for the wider region, and it is very important that we deliver that message.”

According to Dr al-Derham, QF was established through a vision that changed the way we look at things, and that recognised the need to think outside of the box.

“We have been fortunate to partner with the elite universities at QF, and that has provided us with the opportunity to work hand-in-hand with researchers, education providers, and talent. We now have a golden opportunity to move toward new frontiers, building on everything we have achieved together over the past 25 years.”

Sheikh Dr Mohamed pointed out that QF has helped change Qatar for the 21st century, and it has always supported healthcare of the nation.

"We are looking to build human capacity in healthcare while also nurturing a healthy population and enabling people to live longer, more productive lives. We hope that with the continued support of QF, we can build a healthcare system that ensure people can bring value to our community for a long time to come. And we will look to develop more focused research, supported by the way institutes within QF work together, that is applicable to Qatar and other countries,” he maintained.

Genetti said: "QF and ExxonMobil share many of the same values, including in education, health, research, and technology – all of which help to drive a society toward being knowledge-based.

"If you look back over 25 years, it is amazing to see what collaboration has achieved in Qatar. Research is a long-term endeavour, and you have to be committed to it for years, even decades, to see its full benefits. But we can achieve more together if our strategic objectives are clear and we collate all our efforts.”

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