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Intel Corporation in collaboration with three lead NGOs; Queen Rania Centre for Entrepreneurship (QRCE), INJAZ Al-Arab and Education for Employment (EFE), have signed individual agreements to boost entrepreneurial capacity in the Middle East.
Intel will work in collaboration with the NGOs to create local capacity with programs including; Intel Entrepreneurship Challenge, Intel Learn Program and Intel Youth Enterprise Program. These programs are part of Intel’s annual investment to improve education globally. Each of the agreements seeks to enable the next generation of entrepreneurs by providing young people with the opportunity to develop their talents, passions, and skills while creating employment opportunities for other youth and developing their local communities.
Commenting on the announcement, Ferruh Gurtas, Corporate Affairs Director for Middle East, Turkey and Africa, Intel Corporation, stated, “Entrepreneurship drives innovation and has the power to accelerate economic growth. At Intel we believe that by working in collaboration with governments, education institutes and NGOs we can help local communities develop a thriving entrepreneurial culture which in turn positively impacts society. When individuals are supported by education, investment, and infrastructure, they have the opportunity to obtain the skills, technology and resources they need to build successful businesses that drive innovation whilst additionally creating future employment opportunities.”
Intel and QRCE will work together to implement Intel Youth Enterprise Program in Jordan as the first program globally and also send winners of Business Plan Competition in Jordan to the Intel Global Challenge finals at UC Berkeley, USA in November 2011. At the global competition, student teams from around the world vie for $100,000 in prize money and receive direct feedback from leaders in the Silicon Valley entrepreneur community.
Commenting on the collaboration with Intel, HRH Princess Sumaya bint El Hassan, President of the El Hassan Science City and the Royal Scientific Society said, “Tackling the issue of youth unemployment is a serious concern for governments in Arab World. It is important that we work together with the private sector to harness their knowledge and know-how, fostering growth and innovation amongst our youth. We believe that practical experiences combined with theoretical study are the best methods of inspiring an entrepreneurial culture and Intel Youth Enterprise program is a great combination of theory and practice.”
In addition to the capacity building programs, Intel and INJAZ Al-Arab are working in collaboration to create an online portal to further promote entrepreneurship, financial literacy and business skills.
Soraya Salti, INJAZ Al-Arab Regional Director and Junior Achievement Senior Vice President MENA, added, “Youth unemployment in the Arab world is set to remain high in the coming years. The internet is an amazing tool that can rapidly assist with the dissemination of content and e-learning. Through the creation of an education portal with Intel’s support, students will have a go-to platform to further their entrepreneurial education. Arming the Middle Eastern youth with 21st century skills is one of the main challenges facing the region – the development of the INJAZ Al-Arab portal will contribute to addressing the issue.”
Intel will work in collaboration with EFE to utilize the Intel Learn Program to train youth across the Middle East to support micro businesses. The pilot training of Intel Learn was initially delivered to 20 youth in Jordan by EFE and five out of those twenty youth started a business as the result of the training.
Jamie McAuliffe, President and CEO, Education for Employment added, “Entrepreneurial skills are best developed through hands on education. Intel’s programs provide opportunities for individuals to gain the experience and skills needed to turn ideas into thriving businesses. At EFE our highest priority is concrete job creation. By working together with the private sector we seek to bring youth closer to the market and to bring the market closer to the youth.”