Queen Rania honors inJAz Bahrain students
Her Majesty Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan, in her role as the Regional Ambassador of INJAZ, attended a special students' assignment organized by inJAz Bahrain as part of the "Banks in Action" program at the Citibank headquarters in Bahrain. Citibank, a longtime partner of inJAz Bahrain, hosted the "Banks in Action" competition event for the 2nd consecutive year.
Since Her Majesty Queen Rania assumed her role as the ambassador of INJAZ students in the region, she has been actively involved and taking part in a number of major activities with students in their classrooms and other extended learning opportunities such as the "Company" program competition.
Her Majesty was joined by Sheikha Hessa bint Khalifa Al Khalifa, inJAz Bahrain Executive Director, Bahraini Undersecretary of Education Sheikh Hisham Al Khalifa, CEO of Citibank Mazin Manna'a, and inJAz Bahrain board members and management staff.
Commenting on the event, Her Majesty Queen Rania said, "The 'Banks in Action' competition shows INJAZ at its best. Teaching our children the value of money, the spirit of business, and the rewards of hard work improves not only their future prospects as job seekers but our future prosperity as a region. I want to thank INJAZ and the Kingdom of Bahrain for their inspiring example, and all the competitors for their impressive skills."
Teams from three boys' and three girls' schools participated in the two-month long competition which is based on inJAz Bahrain's successful "Banks in Action" program. The students assume the roles of managers and make decisions on how to best steer it to success through a special bank simulation program.
While inJAz Bahrain students were performing their task in the competition, Queen Rania observed their performance, interacted and raised questions. On the completion of the competition, her Majesty congratulated the winning team and wished the others all the best.
The teams' performance is evaluated through a standard Bank Performance Index (BPI) that is based on net profit, return on assets, return on equity, loan share, deposit share, and capital ratio.
Sheikha Hessa bint Khalifa Al Khalifa expressed Her satisfaction with the event, stating "We are very delighted and grateful for Her Majesty Queen Rania's attendance, a gesture which exemplifies her personal involvement and caring passion for the development of youth across the Arab world. We also thank Citibank for providing this unique, innovative learning experience and for the ongoing support of its employees who volunteer their time to mentor young Bahrainis students and provide them with valuable work-readiness and financial literacy education."
East Riffa School for boys won this year's top honors and took home the title of "Bank of Choice", followed by Ahmad Al Omran School for boys and Al Sheikh Isa Bin Ali School for boys, respectively.
Since 2005, the Citigroup Foundation has been annually contributing $40,000 in grants to inJAz Bahrain to implement the "Banks in Action" program at the governmental secondary schools.
"Citi bank is honored to receive Her Majesty, Queen Rania at its premises and share with inJAz Bahrain students the belief that financial literacy is an important life skill for any young person because it gives them an understanding of how financial institutions help people manage their money and achieve their life goals," said Mr. Manna'a. "We are delighted to share our expertise with Bahraini students, and hope this education inspires many of them to pursue careers in the financial services industry."
To date, a total of 3000 students from all secondary girls' and boys' schools have benefited from the "Banks in Action" program. Bahrain is the first country in the Middle East to have started implementing the program, having first introduced it in 2006.
As with all inJAz Bahrain programs, "Banks in Action" is a volunteer-led program. The program is comprised of eight classroom sessions in which secondary school students learn the principles of the banking industry and the challenges of successfully operating a bank in a competitive environment while emphasizing their role as responsible corporate citizens.
The INJAZ Company Program has two overarching aims. Firstly, to foster an understanding of the world of work and a spirit of entrepreneurship through the principle of ‘Learning by Doing’, and secondly, to encourage young people to think globally about their enterprising potential and activities. In joining the INJAZ Company Program, students become part of a growing and thriving community of ambitious, creative, resourceful and hard-working young men and women who are keen on shaping and transforming opportunities across the Middle East and North Africa region. Through INJAZ Company Program, high school and university students get to learn how to start up their entrepreneurial companies.