Arab Space Pioneer Programme - FAQ

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced the programme’s launch in a tweet posted on July 4, 2020. It stated: “In the next few days, the UAE will launch its Hope Probe to Mars; the first Arab mission to the Red Planet. Today, we are launching a Programme for Arab youth to join us and receive training in space programmes and technologies in the UAE. We seek to prepare and embrace the new generation of Arab astronomers and space scientists. We are also seeking to revive part of our scientific culture.”

Expert Track
Graduate Track
Talent Track

What is the Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

The Arab Space Pioneers Programme is the first specialised initiative of its kind in the Arab world, enabling a new generation of qualified space enthusiasts and professionals to shape a prominent role for the region in the space science, research and exploration sector. These leaders will leverage the experience gained through the programme to boost growth in Arab countries and build advanced sustainable industries in the space sector. The Programme itself also creates promising future opportunities for Arabs that harness the knowledge, innovation and creativity of the region’s economies.

Arab Space Pioneers Programme - vision

The fundamental aim of the Programme is to enhance the Arab world’s role and leadership in the space sector. In addition, it aims to:

  • Inspire and encourage Arab youth to study advanced sciences and technologies.
  • Educate, train and enhance the Arab world’s most promising talent in the space sector.
  • Support the Arab world’s youth, scientists, engineers and experts, and further develop their capabilities for the region’s space sciences and technologies sectors.
  • Stimulate space technology and science R&D, thereby contributing to sustainable development in the region.

Arab Space Pioneers Programme – Programme Structure

The Arab Space Pioneers Programme is divided into three specialised tracks:

  • Expert Track: This track is dedicated to Arab experts and scientists in the space sector, who can contribute to the design and manufacture of satellites based on project-specific technical criteria and conditions, as well as contribute due to their expertise in current or ongoing space related projects.
  • Graduate Track: This track provides a scholarship opportunity for accomplished Arabs to study space sciences and technology at a Master's or PhD level at Universities throughout the UAE that offer space related programmes, as well as opportunities to internships within space related R&D centres across the UAE as part of their course curriculum.
  • Talent Track: This track provides young Arab pioneers across the world’s school students starting from grade 10 with an opportunity to learn more about space sciences and technologies, thereby contributing significantly to developing and enhancing their talent whilst providing guidance as they prepare to enter this vital sector.

How can I choose the right track in The Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

You can participate in any track if you are an Arab student, researcher, scientist, innovator, or an inventor with a creative mind, scientific aptitude and mind-set, and have a passion for space sciences and their applications. You can join these tracks as per the following conditions:

  • Expert Track: If you are a graduate with a bachelor’s degree or higher, or with work experience in a related field to support space sector projects (Age: 22-60 years).
  • Graduate Track: If you have completed a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and wish to pursue a graduate degree in a specialised space field to graduate with a master’s or PhD degree.
  • Talent Track: If you are between 14-20 years old, have a great passion for space, and proven contributions in this sector across scientific school projects.

What are the advantages of admittance to the Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

The Programme offers an opportunity to those that seek it, including the tools that could enable promising future career opportunities in the space sector. It offers opportunities to link you with educational scholarships in related majors, and financial stipends to stay in the UAE. Participants of the Programme with knowledge and ability to do so will be able to work on ongoing and future space related projects and get involved in programmes in space sciences and technology in the UAE.

What role will the Programme play in the development of the space sector regionally? How will it support Arab youth interested in this sector?

  • The Programme provides opportunities to learn, train, gain experience and be part of the growing space sector, this includes developing capabilities in space sciences and technology to support a successful career.
  • Selected applicants will be invited and supported, encouraging them to further develop their skills through suitable programmes.
  • The Programme targets Arabs: Youth to our expert scholars, engineers, researchers, scientists and innovators, to anyone who has a great passion for space sciences and their applications, dreams about the impossible, and who’s ambition is limitless.

What will be the UAE’s role in facilitating this Programme across the region?

The Programme is managed by the UAE Space Agency. It will select Arab applicants via an impartial technical evaluation committee from across the world to come together in the UAE, driven by the common goal to contribute to the further development of the regional space sector.

Are English skills required?

Yes. English language skills are necessary for all the Programme’s tracks, as it will be the language of communication during projects and in academic institutions.

Can non-Arabs register and participate in the Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

Participation is only open to all Arabs, even if they reside in other countries.

Can I apply even if I’m not majoring in space?

Yes. Anyone can be part of the Programme, as long as they are passionate about space, science and technology. We accept applications from various disciplines. The programme is not restricted to science majors only.

Can UAE residents register and participate in the Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

The Programme is open to all Arabs across the world that fit the criteria specified in each Track.

Can I participate in the Arab Space Pioneers Programme even after registration is closed?

We regret not being able to receive applications after registrations close, but anyone who misses this year’s registration period can apply during the next call for applicants, since the programme will continue. Please follow our social media accounts and this website to learn about the new dates to register for the Programme’s next session.

How will evaluation and selection be conducted in the Arab Space Pioneers Programme?

Three tracks are specified for participants in the Programme. These include the Expert track, the Graduate track, and the Talent track. Next steps:

  • An impartial technical evaluation committee will be formed to set the criteria for each track – the committee will then screen, evaluate, and interview the top applicants then pick the best candidates.
  • The appropriate number of participants in each track will be finalised based on the programme capacity.
  • Considerations will be made on geographical distribution to cover all Arab countries in specific proportions. Considerations that contribute to the transparency, fairness and credibility of the programme will also be applied.
  • The selected applicants of each track will be announced.

What are the terms and conditions for selection?

Selection will be conducted through conditions and criteria set by a committee, where multiple factors are considered to ensure transparency and comply with the Programme’s wider goals. These include equal opportunities in terms of the number of participants from each country, age group, male to female ratios, etc. To help us with this we will be taking the registered candidates through a more thorough application process in order to give all applicants in each track a better chance to represent themselves.

Are there fees to register and join the Programme?

There are no fees to register and join the Programme.

Will job opportunities in the UAE be available for participants?

There is no guarantee of employment after completing the programme, but the work experience gained by participants will significantly enhance their resumes, and the opportunity will widen their network, as well as act as a showcase of the candidates’ skills and abilities that could lead to a future work opportunity.

I registered but couldn't upload all the files?

With the extended screening and registration process that will soon take place to allocate all applicants into one of the three tracks, this will give all applicants more flexibility to upload further documents and files to put your best foot forward to the screening committee.

What skills will participants acquire at the end of the Programme?

  • The Expert track provides job opportunities and the chance to be part of the growing space projects that the UAE Space Agency is working on.
  • The Graduate track provides opportunities to gain full scholarships and university degrees from internationally accredited academic institutions based in the UAE.
  • The Talent track provides an opportunity for young Arab pioneers across the World to learn more about space and its sciences and technologies, while contributing to refining their talents, preparing and guiding them to enter in this vital sector, and arming them with knowledge from training programmes and courses to help prepare them for future careers or studies.

When will the selected applicants be announced? When will the Arab Space Pioneers Programme start?

Every track is unique in the tailored opportunities offered, and the timeline in which this takes place. Any updates will be posted on this website, posted on our social media accounts or shared with you to the email address provided. We look forward to guiding applicants through a detailed process as they are placed into their respective tracks. There are some opportunities that open as soon as August, stay tuned to know more.

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