University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD)
Engineering students of University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD) recently showcased a remarkable range of engineering innovations, developed as part of a newly introduced course that guides students through various stages of
a successful product innovation.
Presenting their unique inventions to a panel of industry and academic experts, the students of the Master of Engineering Management programme unveiled their designs and prototypes for a range of unique engineering products, including a device that can be affixed to a flat tyre so that the user can continue to drive until he finds assistance.
Speaking about the innovations, Dr. Mohamed Watfa, Associate Professor at UOWD and runner-up in the 2012 'Stars of Science' TV show, said, "These students have demonstrated immense creativity and technical skills in their designs; many of them show great commercial feasibility and will actually be submitted for patents soon. We have even identified a number of projects that demonstrate the potential to progress in the televised inventors' contest 'Stars of Science' and we have made a commitment to mentor the students through the process." Dr. Watfa added, "From the outset, the Master of Engineering Management course was designed to offer students a unique experience in innovative thinking, which no other U.A.E. university offers. The course opens students' minds to creative thinking, and with Dubai readying to host World Expo 2020, I have no doubt that some of our Emirati students will not only attend the Expo, but also participate in it with their patentable products." Dr. Kamal Jaafar, Associate Professor at UOWD, explained, "We have evolved the way we teach engineering management from conventional methods to include more practical, real-world lessons and challenges. This changes the mentality of the students and makes their learning more industry-relevant." The culmination of this year's course involved students presenting their prototypes to an expert panel consisting of Dr. Watfa, Dr. Jaafar, and industry representatives, Samer Mahdi, Programme Manager, Global Operations, General Electric and Ali Taha, Senior Project Manager, Fujitsu.
The panel members were impressed by the innovative concepts, amongst which were a tin opening appliance that works with suction and laser technology, and a tool that combines multiple keys into one simple gadget.
Ibrahim Al Tartoor, a student of the Master of Engineering Management programme, who works as a Project Engineer with ART Consultants, said, "The programme drove me to constantly look for innovative solutions at the workplace, which is appreciated by both managers and the clients I work with. I have been challenged and learnt a great deal from this course, which has opened up a whole range of exciting possibilities for my career growth."