First Emirati women graduate as “Master of Coastal Waters”

Abu Dhabi is today marking a new milestone, as the first three Emirati women have graduated as masters, with the rank of captain, of 24-metre vessels at the Maritime Training Centre of Abu Dhabi Ports.

Preceding Emirati Women’s Day, an article in the American Journal of Transportation highlighted the achievements of Emirati women in the maritime sector, including the three graduates, Sahar Rasti, Fatema Al Khaja and Mahra Al Shamsi, who received the “Certificate of Competency Master of Coastal Waters up to 24 Metres Vessels,” along with ten other students after six and a half months of extensive theoretical and practical training and coursework.

Abu Dhabi Ports began the course specifically to train Emiratis in the skills required to become sea captains, and it aligned these efforts with the vision of the UAE’s leadership to empower women, for them to become a vital component in the development of society, the magazine stated.

Lecturers from the Australian Maritime College trained the 16 students, and the Australian Marine Safety Authority, the official representative of the International Maritime Organisation in Australia, issued the certification.

“With this achievement, the first Emirati woman to successfully pass the Vessel Traffic Services, VTS, IALA course, Fawziya Al Dhaheri, is also the first Emirati woman to work as a VTS operator in the Abu Dhabi Marine Services, SAFEEN. Through the participation of Emirati women in the maritime sector, the country has seen a rise in their contributions to the economy, and the realisation of Vision 2030,” it added.

Emirati women have made progressive achievements in many sectors throughout the UAE’s journey, and due to the vision and support of the nation’s wise leadership, they have successfully attained the highest executive roles in both the public and private sectors.

The UAE’s leadership has also ensured the active involvement of Emirati women in various segments of society.

Over the past year, Emirati women have increasingly stepped into the limelight and taken on new and progressive roles. Their recent accomplishments include the first Emirati female graduates of Harvard University, and a successful ascent to the summit of Alaska’s 6,190-metre Mt. Denali.

The article concluded with Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, CEO of Abu Dhabi Ports, expressing his pride for each of the students. “The UAE possesses immense national talent, and we, at Abu Dhabi Ports, are eager to provide every opportunity for our young women and men to develop their capabilities and fulfil their potential.

That these young women have graduated from this intensive course sets an example for future generations, and highlights the career opportunities available in the maritime industry,” he stated.

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