Ajman workplace project gives Emirati teenagers insight into tourism industry

AJMAN // Be it Ajman’s coastline, its desert, or the towns and cities, Khalifa Al Bulooshi and Sultan Al Suwaidi know the emirate’s geography like the back of their hands.

The 19-year-old pair, both born and bred in Ajman, are looking forward to showing tourists around the emirate.

They are among the first batch of eight secondary school pupils to take part in a month-long training programme launched by the Ajman Tourist Development Department (ATDD), in cooperation with Ajman Palace Hotel, to encourage more Emiratis to chose tourism as a career.

The idea of working in the emirate’s growing tourism industry, either as a guide leading groups of international visitors or at the front desk of a hotel, is something that appealed to Sultan, particularly as he would be one of the first Emiratis to do so.

“I love to work in the tourism field where no Emiratis have worked,” said the grade 12 pupil from the Secondary Technical School in Ajman. “They can accept us in this job.”

As part of phase one of the programme, Sultan learnt how to make adverts for the hotel, welcome visitors and translate information clearly for Arabic speakers who don’t understand English.

Despite not traditionally being a industry considered by Emiratis, Khalifa said his family were very encouraging with his choice.

“My parents welcomed the idea because they are always looking for jobs that Emirati people have never worked in,” said Khalifa, who added that he has learnt how to interact with people from different cultures and how to improve his communication skills.

“The programme aims to encourage UAE nationals to work in the tourism sector to increase the percentage of Emirati employees in the various tourism facilities; a target which goes in line with Ajman Vision 2021 and ATDD’s strategic plan,” said Asmaa Al Beloushi, head of ATDD’s training section.

The second phase, due to begin in April, will include 20 female students who will work towards obtaining a tourist guide licence.

Dr Jaclyn Fowler, vice principal at Secondary Technical School, said the programme is open to all grade 12 pupils.

“It is for both boys and girls. They get a chance of working in a work environment for about four weeks and eight hours per day and feel how it is like to be in a job place,” she said.

“They take what they have learnt [in classes] and apply [them] for real. They come back for the rest of term inspired and understanding this what they have been preparing for.”

The first batch of eight pupils will take business-themed class to learn about hotel management and how to run a hotel as well as other aspects of the tourism industry.

“They might go to the airport, a hotel, other companies and we try to place them in places where their skills must be used. [Before that] we ask companies to guarantee to us if students will actually apply what they have learnt,” said Ms Fowler.

Moanna Hassan, a supervisor at the school, said that during the programme the youngsters will be sent to work in different departments at the Ajman Palace Hotel.

“We spread them to finance, marketing and logistics departments. We also put them in reception [to learn how to] deal with customers and in the security section, to learn about patrols, cameras and go around the building to check if it is safe,” he said.


Gulf rugby

Who’s won what so far in 2018/19

Western Clubs Champions League: Bahrain
Dubai Rugby Sevens: Dubai Hurricanes
West Asia Premiership: Bahrain

What’s left

UAE Conference

March 22, play-offs:
Dubai Hurricanes II v Al Ain Amblers, Jebel Ali Dragons II v Dubai Tigers

March 29, final

UAE Premiership

March 22, play-offs: 
Dubai Exiles v Jebel Ali Dragons, Abu Dhabi Harlequins v Dubai Hurricanes

March 29, final

Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices


Director: Inas Halabi

Starring: Nijmeh Hamdan, Kamal Kayouf, Sheikh Najib Alou

Rating: 4/5

The burning issue

The internal combustion engine is facing a watershed moment – major manufacturer Volvo is to stop producing petroleum-powered vehicles by 2021 and countries in Europe, including the UK, have vowed to ban their sale before 2040. The National takes a look at the story of one of the most successful technologies of the last 100 years and how it has impacted life in the UAE.

Part three: an affection for classic cars lives on

Read part two: how climate change drove the race for an alternative 

Read part one: how cars came to the UAE


Round 1: Beat Leolia Jeanjean 6-1, 6-2
Round 2: Beat Naomi Osaka 7-6, 1-6, 7-5
Round 3: Beat Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-2
Round 4: Beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-0
Quarter-final: Beat Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2
Semi-final: Beat Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-4
Final: Beat Jasmine Paolini 6-2, 6-2

Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace

Developer: Big Ape Productions
Publisher: LucasArts
Consoles: PC, PlayStation
Rating: 2/5

About Seez

Company name/date started: Seez, set up in September 2015 and the app was released in August 2017  

Founder/CEO name(s): Tarek Kabrit, co-founder and chief executive, and Andrew Kabrit, co-founder and chief operating officer

Based in: Dubai, with operations also in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Lebanon 

Sector:  Search engine for car buying, selling and leasing

Size: (employees/revenue): 11; undisclosed

Stage of funding: $1.8 million in seed funding; followed by another $1.5m bridge round - in the process of closing Series A 

Investors: Wamda Capital, B&Y and Phoenician Funds 

The specs

Engine: 6-cylinder, 4.8-litre
Transmission: 5-speed automatic and manual
Power: 280 brake horsepower
Torque: 451Nm
Price: from Dh153,00
On sale: now

The specs: 2018 Nissan Patrol Nismo

Price: base / as tested: Dh382,000

Engine: 5.6-litre V8

Gearbox: Seven-speed automatic

Power: 428hp @ 5,800rpm

Torque: 560Nm @ 3,600rpm

Fuel economy, combined: 12.7L / 100km


Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5


Bayer Leverkusen 2 Bayern Munich 4
 Alario (9'), Wirtz (89')
Bayern: Coman (27'), Goretzka (42'), Gnabry (45'), Lewandowski (66')

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
Nick Diaz v Vicente Luque
Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through www.etihadarena.ae and www.ticketmaster.ae.


Galaxy: Dos Santos (79', 88')
United: Rashford (2', 20'), Fellaini (26'), Mkhitaryan (67'), Martial (72')


Uefa Champions League semi-finals, first leg
Liverpool v Roma

When: April 24, 10.45pm kick-off (UAE)
Where: Anfield, Liverpool
Live: BeIN Sports HD
Second leg: May 2, Stadio Olimpico, Rome

Meydan race card

6.30pm: Maiden; Dh165,000; (Dirt) 1,200m
7.05pm: Handicap; Dh170,000; (D) 1,200m​​​​​​​
7.40pm: Maiden; Dh165,000; (D) 1,900m​​​​​​​
8.15pm: Handicap; Dh185,000; (D) 2,000m​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
8.50pm: Handicap; Dh185,000; (D) 1,600m​​​​​​​
9.25pm: Handicap; Dh165,000; (D) 2,000m

If you go

There are regular flights from Dubai to Addis Ababa with Ethiopian Airlines with return fares from Dh1,700. Nashulai Journeys offers tailormade and ready made trips in Africa while Tesfa Tours has a number of different community trekking tours throughout northern Ethiopia. The Ben Abeba Lodge has rooms from Dh228, and champions a programme of re-forestation in the surrounding area.

UAE currency: the story behind the money in your pockets
Five calorie-packed Ramadan drinks

Rooh Afza
100ml contains 414 calories
Tang orange drink
100ml serving contains 300 calories
Carob beverage mix
100ml serving contains about 300 calories
Qamar Al Din apricot drink
100ml saving contains 61 calories
Vimto fruit squash
100ml serving contains 30 calories


Name: Kinetic 7
Started: 2018
Founder: Rick Parish
Based: Abu Dhabi, UAE
Industry: Clean cooking
Funding: $10 million
Investors: Self-funded

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