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Eight women Arab scientists picked in UNESCO Program

Last updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 12:41 AM

Saudi Gazette report

— Eight exceptional Arab women scientists were announced as winners by the L’Oréal-UNESCO “For Women in Science Pan Arab” Regional Program in its third edition here. The scientists are from Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Tunisia, Sudan, Iraq, and Bahrain.

The ceremony was organized under the auspices of Prof. Dr. Nadia Zakhary, Egypt’s Minister of Scientific Research, and was attended by key Egyptian figures.

Geoff Skingsley, Executive Vice President of L’Oréal’s Africa-Middle East Zone, and Dr. Bechir Lamine, Director of UNESCO Cairo office, were also present, according to a press release issued here.

The fellowship program, now in its 3rd Pan-Arab version highlights the crucial role women play in science and honors outstanding female postdoctoral researchers who present exceptional projects in different areas of science and technology.

Each fellow receives a grant of $20,000 and is empowered through this initiative to push forward her research efforts in the field of her choice. Since the creation of the program in 1998, over 1,300 women in over 100 countries have been recognized for their groundbreaking achievements and innovative researches.

Dr. Alia Shatanawi (Jordan), from the University of Jordan, will continue her studies on vessel dysfunctions among diabetic patients, while Dr. Heba Salama (Egypt), from Alexandria University’s Faculty of Agriculture, will further her studies on introducing new winter forage grass species to the Egyptian agricultural system and to investigate their yield performance and nutritive value.

Dr. Hiba El Helou (Syria), from Damascus University will further her studies on dental implants, and Dr. Lina Khanj (Lebanon), from the American University in Beirut, will further her research on traffic offloading in LTE/ Wifi networks.

Dr. Noura Bougasha-Elleuch (Tunisia) from the Ecole Nationale des Ingénieurs de Sfax (ENIS) will undertake research in the field of thyroid diseases, and Dr. Rasha Osman (Sudan), from the Faculty of Mathematical Sciences — University of Khartoum will advance her studies on Integrated Performance Modeling of Database Designs.

Dr. Reyam Al Malikey (Iraq) from the Women’s Science College at Baghdad University will work on studies concerning mercury exposure assessment in Iraqi women’s hair.

Similraly, Dr. Sumaya Abbas (Bahrain), from the Arabian Gulf University, will continue her studies in solid waste management in the Bahrain.

Prof. Dr. Nadia commended the FWIS program and said: “What the Arab fellows here have accomplished through their groundbreaking projects is a real source of motivation to their peers and the female population in the whole Arab region. This program is a lever for distinguished women scientists who have shown a true dedication to science and advancement of knowledge in this important part of the world.”

Initiating the ceremony, Dr. Bechir stated: “In this third version of the Pan Arab celebration of women in science, we cannot but applaud the efforts of women around the Arab World for their dedication to science and strive to advance new solutions in several domains. The program is successful because it is one of the few established platforms in the region encouraging women scientists to highlight their work and help them advance their research.”

Sandeep Rai, General Manager of L’OREAL Egypt noted: “L’Oreal has always been at the forefront of scientific advancement in the world. Our success story with the Pan Arab FWIS program is based on the substantial value this fellowship initiative brings to regional female scientists and their countries.”

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