On the Ramadan evening of June 25, two hundred female Saudi engineers from a wide spectrum of engineering and applied disciplines (computing, engineering and architecture) gathered at the headquarters of the Saudi Council of Engineers in Jeddah for the inaugural event of the Saudi Women in Engineering forum. The event was organized as a traditional Sohour gathering in the holy month of Ramadan, and highlighted the recently established partnership between the Arab Women in Computing ArabWIC local Saudi Chapter and the Saudi Council of Engineers’ committee for Women in Engineering (لجنة المهندسات).
The participation of our ArabWIC chapter was led by the collaborative efforts of the Saudi Chapter’s ambassador for the Western region of Saudi Arabia, Engineer Samar Abdulate (a recent graduate of Effat University in Jeddah, and currently a graduate student at George Washington University), and the Saudi Council of Engineers (SCE) Women in Engineering elected member in the Western region, Sarah Alharthy.
Speaking in the event, Dr. Areej Al-Wabil emphasized the need for establishing synergy between professional communities in the Kingdom that aim to support, inspire, retain, encourage collaboration among, increase visibility of and help women in computing and engineering domains advance in their careers.
The event, held at the Saudi Council of Engineers’ headquarters in Jeddah, was hosted and organized by the Saudi Council’s Women in Engineering Committee and was conducted in partnership with two scientific societies, IEEE’s Women in Engineering and ArabWIC’s Saudi Arabian chapter.
Organizers moderated a vibrant program of speakers, from the local and regional communities of professional women in engineering domains, to highlight contributions of women in their professions, raise awareness among female engineers about the roles and responsibilities of the newly established committee for women in the Saudi Council of Engineers, and to learn more about the professional and scientific communities in the different regions of the Kingdom that are dedicated to advancing the role of Women in STEM.
SCE’s Women in Engineering committee aims to increase the participation and contribution of women on all aspects of engineering and technology. SCE offers various programs designed to help industry, academia and government develop engineering professionals and leaders in their domains. ArabWIC together with SCE’s committee for women and IEEE’s Women in Engineering chapters collectively aim to raise the level of recognition and networking opportunities for women through activities, such as the inaugural event held on Jun 25 and future networking events that span the wide spectrum of regions via SCE Chapters and ArabWIC affiliates in the Kingdom.
The event helped to foster communication and establish communities -both online and offline- for women to connect and share various topics of interest, and affiliate with various organizations that are aligned with providing support and services to women in engineering domains in industry, academia and public sectors.
Engineering and computing define our modern world and they will continue to reshape every part of our future. Our ArabWIC team extend their appreciation to SCE’s Women in Engineering committee for the wonderful initiative, and their generous support for advancing the role of women in engineering and computing domains.