National Power Academy to admit women


By Muhammad Al-Abdullah

Okaz/Saudi Gazette

Dammam — The National Power Academy (NPA) will admit female students in coming years, according to Vice President of the Academy’s Trustees’ Council and Deputy Chairman of Saudi Aramco for Energy Systems Eng. Abdul Karim Al-Ghamdi.

The Academy is working to introduce some specializations for women, he said.

An agreement with a university is also in final stages to receive 200-300 female trainees to undergo intensive training in the field of energy, Ghamdi said, addressing a press conference on Tuesday on the occasion of receiving fresh batch of students in the Academy.

He said the local market is in need of 50,000 to 60,000 manpower in the next two decades.

The first batch comprises 150 students out of a total of 800 applicants. The Academy is set to increase its admission capacity in coming years to 700 students, said Ghamdi.

The Academy was established in 2013 by Saudi Aramco. The Academy is benefitting from the cooperation of several government agencies like the Human Resources Development Fund, the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM) and others.

Several energy specialist companies like General Electric, Siemens and some local companies are also cooperating with the Academy.

Ghamdi said the Academy is an independent, non-profit entity working under the supervision of Bismarck State College, a public college in Bismarck, the capital city of the US state of North Dakota.

The Academy offers three training programs that are aligned with the needs of the local market. One of them is a diploma program for general secondary school students who are nominated by energy companies. It is a two-year theoretical and practical training program where students receive academic and technical training.

The Academy also offers 3- to 12-month training program for professionals, such as electric and mechanical engineers who wish to pursue further education and receive specific training. This is in addition to short-term programs that offer three- to five-day courses in specific programs and disciplines for technicians, engineers and supervisory and management personnel who work in the energy field.