WCMC-Q programme boosts Qataris’ research capacity

 04 Aug 2014 - 1:24




Dr Khaled Machaca, Associate Dean for Research (right) and Yassir Hussain, Nationals Training Programme Coordinator, hand out graduation certificates.

DOHA: Seven interns have used an innovative Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar (WCMC-Q) programme as a springboard to launch their careers in biomedical research.
They completed the six-month Biomedical Research Training Programme for Nationals, which offers graduates the opportunity to learn a comprehensive range of scientific research skills by working with WCMC-Q’s faculty in state-of-the-art laboratories. 
Dr Khaled Machaca, Associate Dean for Research, said the programme offered a hands-on research experience that would prove invaluable to the interns in future.

Dr Javaid Sheikh, Dean, WCMC-Q, 
addressing the ceremony.

“It provides trainees with a strong and broad grounding in essential skills they need to pursue successful careers in research, ranging from practical bench research skills to design of research projects and research administration,” he said during a ceremony marking the completion of the programme.
“I hope and am confident that this accomplished group of interns has gained experience that will allow them to make meaningful contributions to Qatar’s growing biomedical research community.”
He thanked Dr Mohammed Al Thani, Director, Public Health, Supreme Council of Health, who was present, for his institution’s continued support for the programme. 
The ceremony marked the completion of the fourth installment of the programme, which runs from January to July. 
This year’s interns included Amera Al Saadoun, Ghada Saeed Mubarak, Sara Nasser Al Thani, Ayeda Ahmed, Noor Saad Al Hajri, Amna Al Thani and Alya Saleh Al Sulaiti.
Dr Javaid Sheikh, Dean, praised the dedication of the interns and hailed the programme as a key element of the college’s commitment to build human capacity in scientific research in line with Qatar National Vision 2030.
He said: “Our mission as a college is not only to produce excellent clinicians, but also to help build the workforce Qatar needs to realise its bold and unique vision to become a world leader in the field of research and development. 
“By completing the rigorous and demanding programme the interns have shown they have the potential to be crucial members of this new generation of scientific investigators. I offer each of them my warmest congratulations.”
Eighteen interns have now completed the programme since it was launched in 2011. 
The programme is overseen by Yassir Hussain, Nationals Training Program Coordinator, and Shaikha Al Qahtani, Programme Coordinator, both graduates of the programme.
Intern Noor Al Hajri, a graduate of Qatar University’s biomedical science degree programme, said: “Learning how research works has been beneficial and has given most of us clear ideas of the paths we wish to follow in our careers. 
“I have a strong interest in neurogenetics and want to pursue research in the area – the programme has helped me develop skills I need to do that,” Al Hajri added.
Although the programme is aimed at recent graduates interested in pursuing a career as a bench scientist, clinician or biomedical researchers, graduates who have non-science degrees may also be accepted.
Applications for next year’s programme will be accepted in Fall 2014, with dates to be announced on the webpage by September:  http://qatar-weill.cornell.edu/research/programs/program3.html