Posted on January 10, 2017

Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) is hosting a number of distinguished guest speakers this month, as part of a series of events aimed at encouraging leadership development among students. The LeaderShape Guest Leader Panel, which took place on January 4th, and a public lecture on “Leadership Worldwide and Qatar”, planned for January 10th, provide participants real life insights about the challenges and opportunities of modern leadership.

Earlier this month, HBKU hosted a panel of local leaders from diverse backgrounds to address university students taking part in the popular global youth leadership training program – LeaderShape. Hosted by HBKU for the 11th year, LeaderShape is a six-day program that brings together the student community across Qatar and focuses on leadership development for youth. The panel featured Dr. Samar Al Emadi, Chief Rheumatology at Hamad Medical Corporation, Dr. Sami Al-Shammari, Executive Director in the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy that is responsible for delivering Qatar’s 2022 FIFA World Cup, and Essa Al Mannai, Executive Director of Reach Out To Asia. The guest panelists provided

Commenting on the event, Dr. Samar Al Emadi said: “There is great variety of ideas at this LeaderShape event. Most of the students here have brilliant visions and they just need someone to show them alternative ways, or next steps, through which they can achieve their goal.”

Dr. Sami Al-Shammari said: “LeaderShape is a great idea as it gets the students out of their comfort-zone and makes them think about their impact on the local community and the world. I have seen ideas here from protecting wildlife to leading medical advances.” “I feel inspired hearing the visions of these students”, said Essa Al Mannai, “like developing the healthcare system in Qatar, or starting an Islamic university in Singapore, cultivating creative learning in Pakistan, and developing anti-corruption systems. So I have seen young people with great visions here and inshallah they will make it happen in the future.”

Established in the United States of America, LeaderShape’s mission is to create a just, caring, and thriving world where integrity is the core value that drives leaders in public and private sectors. Through the yearly six-day program, HBKU offers 35 students from across all universities in Qatar, a chance for leadership training outside a traditional classroom environment. Each day of the program is focused on a different leadership theme, and encourages them to gain personal skills through the experience of managing themselves, working with others, and learning how to lead.

HBKU invites local leaders to inspire 2 [].jpg

Dr. Khalid B. Letaief, Provost of HBKU, said: “One of our key objectives as a part of our mission is to be able to produce the next generation of leaders – not only for Qatar, but for the rest of the world. A key part of leadership is to build relationships. By opening up LeaderShape to all universities in Qatar, it creates more opportunities to build those relationships between students at different institutions and diverse backgrounds.” Mohammed Al-Housani, an HBKU PhD student in Sustainable Energy, said: “I would like to bring positive change to my community, and to do that you need to be a leader. To be a leader, you need a set of skills and I am at LeaderShape to gain those skills. So far we have discussed the importance of integrity and ethics in leadership, and how leaders can build and maintain relationships.”

Hala Gabr, a Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar’s student of the MFA in Design program, said: “It is a great opportunity for me to meet with like minded people who share the same passion for making a difference in the community through creating change. The diversity of nationality, age, and background in those participating makes it more interesting for me, as it gives me a fresh perspective on how to prioritize tasks and get them done.”    

The upcoming “Leadership Worldwide and Qatar” public lecture will be held on January 10th at the HBKU Student Center Cinema, from 11:45 am to 12:45 pm, and is organized by the HBKU International Students Club and Student Life. His Excellency Dr. Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahman Al Thani, Chairman of Qilaa Training and Consulting, and Zakir Smailagic, Talent Manager at Al Jazeera Media Network, will provide their insights on leadership and management from a regional and global perspective at the event. Maryam Hamad Al-Mannai, Vice President for Student Affairs at HBKU said: “The guest speakers will address challenges and opportunities faced by modern leaders in successfully managing and consistently delivering high performance in their respective roles.”

To learn more about HBKU, its programs, and to register for upcoming events, please visit