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Aqaba's ASEZA signs agreement with University of Texas

Deals with 4 Jordanian bodies inked in Princess Muna's presence

06 March, 14:09
Aqaba's ASEZA signs agreement with University of Texas (ANSA) - Aqaba, March 6 - The Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) has announced that it is one of four Jordanian institutions to have signed initial agreements with the University of Texas at Arlington in a first step towards establishing student and education exchanges and research collaborations. Representatives from UT Arlington and institutions in Jordan signed the new agreements Monday. The agreements were between University of Texas at Arlington and the Jordanian Nursing Council, Hashemite University, the Jordanian University of Science and Technology (JUST) and the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority. The Jordanian delegation included Professor Kamel Mahadin, Professor Rowaida Al-Maaitah, Professor Muntaha Gharaibeh, JUST President Professor Abdallah Malkawi and Hashemite University Professor Kamal Bani Hani.

The signing ceremony was attended by representatives of the four Jordanian institutions and Princess Muna Al Hussein, mother of King Abdullah II of Jordan. The princess founded the Jordanian Nursing Council and has been honored for her ongoing commitment to the provision of quality nursing through the continual advancement of training and education. Princess Muna Al Hussein commended the UT Arlington College of Nursing for its "tireless efforts in providing quality innovative nursing programs and emphasizing nursing skills to meet the challenges of increasingly complex health problems.

"Our visit will result in a stronger collaboration between your prestigious university, the Jordanian Nursing Council and our Jordanian universities in the areas of science and research," she said. Dr. Kamel Mahadin, Chief Commissioner of Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA), signed a cooperation agreement with The University of Texas at Arlington represented by its President Dr. Vistasp M. Karbhari.

Under the terms of the agreement, both parties agree to establish a program of exchange and collaboration in areas of interest and benefit to both institutions. Mahadin noted that this agreement seeks to establish means of cooperation on the cultural, economic and academic levels. "This important agreement aims at developing cooperation between ASEZA and the University of Texas, one of US's most prestigious universities, as we strive to transform Jordan's only port city (Aqaba) into a world class business hub and leisure destination," he added.

UT Arlington President Karbhari said the agreements continue building upon the strong relationship that exists between the university and Jordan. The agreements mark the beginning of a mutually beneficial partnership among faculty members, students and researchers and a country focused on improved health care for its people. "Our dream is that our world can become a better place through the power of advancing and sharing knowledge," Karbhari said.

Mahadin added that: "the purposes of the cooperation between UT Arlington and ASEZA include promoting interest in the respective teaching and research activities and the deepening of understanding of the economic, cultural, environmental and social issues of the respective institutions". "As we sign this agreement," he continued, "we will start working on developing institutional exchanges that involve faculty members and staff of both institutions, organizing symposia, conferences, short courses and meetings on research issues and carrying out joint research and continuing education programs, in addition to exchanging information pertaining to research developments at each institution".

Mahadin stressed the importance of the educational sector in the development of Aqaba. "We strive to achieve his Majesty King Abdullah II's vision for Aqaba and Jordan as we in Aqaba focus heavily education because we believe in the significant role it plays in the development process and in building the capacity of the communities" he said.

"Aqaba has successfully attracted a number of investments in the sector including universities and academies and the Zone offers still more investment opportunities in education". According to Mahadin the agreement is as part of ASEZA's strategy to develop international cooperation with renowned academic institutions. It is worth mentioning that ASEZA recently signed an agreement with the Italian University of Palermo to develop means of cooperation on similar levelsm including establishing a faculty of Medicine at the University of Jordan campus in Aqaba.

Moreover, as part of its strategy towards more international cooperation and promotion for Aqaba, ASEZA signed agreements with the city of Basra and several cities in the Italian region of Sicily in addition to Shizuishan of the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region of China.