Lockheed Martin Partners with KFUPM on STEM Training Initiative for Saudi Youth
Lockheed Martin, the U.S.-based global technology leader, is partnering with King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM) to help upskill Saudi youth through Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) initiatives. The partnership will see Lockheed Martin and KFUPM build on ongoing efforts to develop sovereign capabilities in the Kingdom’s aerospace and defense sector by increasing the pipeline of highly skilled Saudi scientists and engineers.
Launched in November by Joseph Rank, Lockheed Martin’s Chief Executive in Saudi Arabia and Africa, and Dr Muhammad Al-Saggaf, President of KFUPM, the partnership includes support for competitions that evaluate senior year graduation projects at KFUPM’s College of Engineering and Computer Science. The competition will run over three semesters, with one winner announced each semester through separate award ceremonies. Lockheed Martin and KFUPM will jointly review and evaluate student submissions for the three events.
“At Lockheed Martin we are committed to supporting the development of skilled talent by developing human capabilities for the aerospace and defense sector. Our partnership with KFUPM reaffirms our enduring partnership with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and our efforts to support upskill the workforce in the country,” said Joseph Rank.
He added: “In line with Vision 2030, we continue to support economic diversification goals through the establishment of a robust domestic defense industry. We also understand the value of education and training and believe a strong pipeline of capable young engineers and scientists is a keystone for the future of the defense industry.”
For his part, Dr. Adel Fadhl Ahmed, Dean of College of Computing and Mathematics at KFUPM said: “Renowned for its strong STEM programs and robust industrial and academic partnerships with leading technology companies and research institutions, KFUPM is delighted to work alongside Lockheed Martin in furthering real-world innovations by talented students graduating from our College of Engineering and Computer Science. As the first higher education institution in the Kingdom dedicated to teaching science and technology – we are confident that this partnership will result in practical and thought-provoking solutions all the while helping students expand competencies and capabilities to meet demands set by a knowledge-based economy.”
Lockheed Martin has more than five decades of presence and partnerships in the Middle East and invests significantly in implementing technology development programs designed to cultivate student interest in STEM fields. Globally, Lockheed Martin is investing heavily in the next generation of engineers and innovators in the defense sector. In the next 10 years, the group expects to hire around 50,000 new STEM professionals.
Lockheed Martin previously collaborated with King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology in 2017 to provide funds to the university to support research projects, which resulted in a number of patents and scientific publications.