When Hamda Alwahedi started his career as an environmental scientist, he didn’t know that he would happen to code and move into a career as a data analyst.
He is not alone, as the UAE’s digital status has fueled the ambition of hundreds of students in the country looking to carve out a niche in technology.
Ms Alwahedi is studying at 42 Abu Dhabi, the emirate’s coding school, to improve her skills.
The institute has received more than 31,000 applications since it opened its doors in October 2020, its CEO Marcos Muller Habig said. National.
More than 300 students are enrolled on campus, and the center aims to be a magnet for global talent by attracting coders from around the world.
Without classrooms or teachers, students can attend the forward-thinking school for free.
Students sharpen their programming skills through exercises, projects, games and peer learning.
The center has attracted applicants from a variety of backgrounds, including oil and gas engineers, university professors, teachers, flight attendants and even a DJ.
For Ms. Alwahedi, the change from geography to coding might seem drastic to an outsider, but she said that in a world where everything depends on technology, it’s not a big change.
The 28-year-old Emirati coder is also pursuing a master’s degree in data analytics at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Dubai.
“I felt stuck in a certain area where I couldn’t really think outside the box in my previous job,” Alwahedi said.
“In technology, I can specialize in several areas, such as networking, information security or game design.
“I started focusing on coding in 2017 and when the pandemic hit, I had plenty of free time.
“I was interested in learning the programming language Python and when 42 Abu Dhabi opened, I thought I could put my knowledge into practice.”
Mrs. Alwahedi hopes to start her career in data analytics soon.
This week, the United Arab Emirates selected him as a coding ambassador. He is among 56 Coding Ambassadors who will help promote the country’s digital status and support the National Coder Program launched in June 2021.
23 of the group of entrepreneurs are Emiratis, selected from all seven emirates.
The program also awards golden visas to 100,000 of the world’s best coders.
Hamed AlHashmi, another Emirati student at 42 Abu Dhabi and a graduate of the Higher Colleges of Technology, has been a coder for over ten years and has been selected as a Coding Ambassador.
“I am honored, humbled and grateful to have been selected based on my technical skills,” Mr. AlHashmi said.
“I want to be part of creating a coding culture in the UAE so that we can promote the country’s digital status.
“As a designer, I promote the importance of digital information to authorities and the private sector, employees and students.
“I will share the concepts of coding and how it can be the driving force behind the economy for years to come.”
He said he works with other ambassadors to improve their technical skills, organizing workshops and hackathons.
Habig 42 from Abu Dhabi said he was thrilled that two students from the center had been chosen as ambassadors.
“I think it’s a validation of the work we’ve been doing,” he said.
“We are very proud to have them at the forefront of this initiative as ambassadors.
“I love the focus on coding, especially in the UAE, because it tends to be a very outsourced thing.
“We hope to attract talent to our program from all over the world, retain them and build this kind of technical skills ecosystem.”
Coders of all nationalities and age groups can apply for a UAE Golden Visa.
He said that when the students graduate, the center will help them apply for a golden visa if they want.
42 The next big step for Abu Dhabi is to focus on cyber security and expand the cyber security offering within the program.
Updated: October 29, 2022, 3:30 am