Speaker offers advice for crucial early career years

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By Amal Fathima Haneef 

UNIVERSITY CITY, SHARJAH— Early in their professional journeys, students ought to be ready to explore diverse career paths and be open to lateral transitions within a company, American University of Sharjah alumnus Mohamed Amer said Oct. 5. 

Their first years in any industry represent “an important phase, capitalize on it and gain experience,” said Amer, regional director of operations for the MENA region at the International Code Council (ICC). 

Amer was the first guest speaker at the inaugural COP 28 Alumni Spotlight Series, an initiative of the Sustainability Office at AUS to recognize alumni achievements in sustainability and climate change. 

The opening session, titled “The Role of ICC in Sustainable Construction,” was held at 9:30 a.m. in Main Building, Hall B. The event was conducted in collaboration with NGN294, a sustainable development course at the College of Engineering.

The International Code Council (ICC) is a globally recognized, self-funded, non-governmental organization dedicated to developing model codes, standards, and building safety solutions aimed at enhancing building safety, protecting lives, and preserving property.

According to Amer, his journey into the disciplines of sustainability and building safety began with a career in the oil and gas industry. However, his pivotal transition into the field occurred while pursuing a master’s degree at AUS, where he engaged in numerous workshops and trade shows associated with sustainability, he added.

Amer said, “It was during this time that I was propelled to delve deeper into the world of sustainability, innovation, and resiliency. These are terms commonly encountered in daily discourse, but they are trending topics and growing exponentially in the market.”

ICC is expanding its presence in the Middle East , providing opportunities for students in the region. Future plans include expanding the footprint in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to offer more opportunities to engineering students.

Julia Carlow, the acting head of sustainability at AUS, opened the event with the statement, “The pursuit of sustainability is not confined to the realm of environmental sciences; it is relevant across all sectors and industries.”

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