Muscat: Oman’s transition into a sustainable knowledge economy is an ambitious goal. Enhancing the current pool of human capital and higher education capacity is the key to transforming the economy. The recent publication of the “Oman Energy Master Plan 2040 – Progress Report,” showed that significant advancements had been made to encourage more Omanis to pursue post-graduate degrees.
Encouraging a higher number of PhD students to study and work in Oman is vital. They represent the intellectual value and the driving force behind top-level research that addresses issues concerning Oman’s oil, gas, and renewables sector. The recent Occidental Oman student seminars that were held in Muscat at GUtech Oman on February 21 and Sultan Qaboos University on April 27 sought to address this challenge.
The seminars gave students access to prominent leaders from industry, academia, and the government, to discuss the benefits of post-graduate education and career opportunities in Oman after obtaining masters or PhD degrees. The panelists fielded questions from the students, and shared their personal experiences and passions in solving some of the Sultanate’s key challenges through applied research.
The future of energy, to a large extent, depends on today’s young generation. They are the engineers and scientists who will one day replace the industry’s baby boomers and play a crucial role in ensuring uninterrupted energy supplies to the world, which will continue to see a rise in demand over the next decades.
“Apart from our inaugural campaign for the Occidental Oman Student Awards for the Advancement of Post-Graduate Education in Oman, the student seminars highlight our on-going efforts to support major educational institutions and current post-graduate students across the Sultanate to qualify, as wellas prepare a new generation of scientists and industry leaders,” said Steve Kelly, president and general manager of Occidental Oman.
It is critical to support Oman’s In Country Value (ICV) and Omanisation, especially as there is a growing sense of urgency to bolster the country’s oil and gas production, while also diversifying the economy. As with all energy producers worldwide, low oil prices have put pressure on Oman’s economy. More than ever, the talent and innovative spirit of the country’s brightest minds, which is well-illustrated by the Occidental Oman Student Awards for the Advancement of Post-Graduate Education, are vital to ensure that the Omani economy flourishes.