Texas A&M at Qatar graduates its 1,000th engineer

Texas A&M University at Qatar graduated its 1,000th engineer during commencement exercises held 9 May at the Qatar National Convention Centre.

More than 100 students walked across the stage during the branch campus’s annual commencement ceremony, including 95 students who graduated with bachelor’s degrees in chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering and petroleum engineering. Of those, 47 were awarded to Qatari graduates and 36 to female engineers. In addition, Texas A&M at Qatar awarded 12 Master of Science and Master of Engineering degrees in chemical engineering. To date, Texas A&M at Qatar has awarded a total of 1,056 degrees, with 42.8% awarded to Qatari graduates.

During the ceremony, Texas A&M University also presented His Excellency Dr. Mohammed bin Saleh Al-Sada an honorary Doctor of Letters degree in recognition of his achievements and longtime support of the university and its branch campus in Qatar.

“I am honored and humbled to receive this honorary degree from Texas A&M University,” H.E. Dr. Al-Sada said. “This is not only a personal accolade for me but also a tribute to the State of Qatar under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar. Since 2003, I have witnessed the evolution, development and growth of Texas A&M at Qatar as a branch campus of Texas A&M University. It is a matter of pride for all of us to have witnessed the successes and accomplishments of this institution over the past 16 years. The work of Texas A&M at Qatar directly contributes to the pillars of the Qatar National Vision 2030, and I applaud this prestigious institution for all it does to make a positive impact on Qatar and throughout the region in the noble cause of education.”

H.E Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General, Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, said, “Qatar is committed to investing in the young generations and this is reflected in the success stories that Education City is witnessing, among them Texas A&M commencement, which I’m honored to speak at today where I would like to congratulate Class of 2019 graduates.

“The graduation that was a distant dream few months ago became a reality today, and it will help graduates achieve their purposes and face any challenges in their professional lives. I would like to invite all graduates to discover themselves and the world and find a purpose for their future and encourage to always look at leaving a mark in the community around them.”

Saeed Binnoora, a Class of 2019 electrical engineering graduate, was selected to address his classmates and fellow graduates during the ceremony.

“We are reminded of the many hardships this country has been through,” Binnoora said, “and we come to the firm realization, that had it not been for the right investments made in the people by the leadership, this country would never have become what it is today. The Class of 2019 marks the 12th graduating class of engineering leaders in Qatar and we are grateful to the people who have become before us because they made it possible. Tonight we realize the greatest reason why we are here: that we are on a humanitarian mission. It is not about the grid, or the bridge, or the catalyst, or the pump, but much grander. We are over a thousand graduates from Texas A&M University at Qatar leading positive change.”

The guest speaker for the evening was His Excellency Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy.

The ceremony ended after Todd Creeger — a Class of 1986 graduate of Texas A&M and president of ConocoPhillips Qatar — inducted the graduates into The Association of Former Students, Texas A&M’s alumni organization that comprises the 500,000 graduates of the university and is known worldwide as the Aggie Network.

While the ceremony marked a significant milestone for Texas A&M at Qatar, the main campus in College Station, Texas (USA), is celebrating more than half a million degrees awarded since its humble beginnings as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas in 1876.

Dr. César O. Malavé, Dean of Texas A&M at Qatar, presided over the ceremony and said, “Through our partnership with Qatar Foundation, Texas A&M at Qatar is educating world-class engineers to meet growing demand for technical expertise and human capital in a workforce that is diversifying as rapidly as it is expanding. For the past 16 years, we have kept this mission in mind. Our first classes began in Education City in September 2003 with 29 students. Since then, our student population has grown to more than 500 engineering students, and as of today, more than 1,050 engineering degrees have been awarded. This incredible journey — and its innumerable success stories — would not be possible without Qatar Foundation’s devotion to education and diverse thought.”