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Effat, USC join hands to develop digital media program

Last updated: Monday, November 12, 2012 12:24 AM

Saudi Gazette report

JEDDAH — Princess Lolowah Al-Faisal, Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees and General Supervisor of Effat University, has signed an agreement with the University of Southern California (USC) to collaborate in the development of a world-class academic program in media and digital production.

The agreement was signed with the university’s President Haifa Jamal Al-Lail and Elizabeth Garrett, Provost of USC.

The agreement states that USC’s School of Cinematic Arts (SCA) and Effat University will work hand-in-hand to train students in the use of the moving image to convey stories, experiences and information to advance the news and media industry.

The program’s main purpose is to train students to get more practical digital media experience.

Princess Lolowah said this collaboration was an important step toward offering unique programs to Saudi students that match international standards.

She added: “It is part of Effat’s mission to offer its students an academic experience that is supported by international expertise.

“By having excellent universities like USC with us, we make sure that we carefully design the curriculum for a program that will be the first of its kind in the Kingdom.”

Effat University’s upcoming MDP program will be offered under Effat’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Dr. Kathleen Guillaume, dean of the college, said: “I think it will perfectly complete our panoply of choices in humanities and social sciences, rooted in Princess Effat Althunayyan Al-Saud’s vision and our institutional mission to spread the awareness of history, values and traditions.

“Our students will bring Effat values to the media in an interdisciplinary manner with the emphasis on gaining knowledge, truth and enlightenment.”
Many students from Effat are excited about the new program and the new partnership with USC. Guillaume added: “During the summer, when I was registering students, several already had a life plan based around a career in the media.

“They said, ‘I want my own show one day’.”
An Effat humanities student said the MDP will prove popular: “It’s something interesting and new.

“A lot of girls are interested in this field, I’m noticing. They are intrigued to know more about it.

“So hopefully it will be a successful major.” 
Another student said: “It’s a really powerful major, especially at this point in time where everyone relates to the media and uses it in many ways on a daily basis. “Offering special subjects and strategies will help make this major more interesting.

“Actually, if the media program opens, Inshallah, I’ll make sure to take it as a free elective.”

Al-Lail added: “We are excited about this collaboration.

“International benchmarking is central to Effat University’s mission and developing the curriculum in consultation with the SCA is a step toward elevating the educational standards of Effat University and contributing to the Kingdom’s goal in transforming the country into a technology-driven society.”

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