Friday - - Editor’s Letter -


t’s been a while since we had a fe­male as­tro­naut in Fri­day – not since March, when we cov­ered the progress of women in STEM – that’s science, tech, en­gi­neer­ing and maths fields. We don’t have one this week – but we have a po­ten­tial one. That’s what this week­end’s edi­tion is all about – mas­sive po­ten­tial. Cate, who ap­pears on our cover along­side Zuhdi, is go­ing to MIT to study plan­e­tary sciences, af­ter grad­u­at­ing from Dubai Col­lege ear­lier this year. Zuhdi is go­ing to Ireland to study medicine af­ter scor­ing highly on his ex­ams. They are just two of six amaz­ing stu­dents who grad­u­ated from UAE schools this year who are headed off to some se­ri­ously im­pres­sive fu­tures – the econ­o­mists, doc­tors, tech wizards, and, per­haps, astro­nauts, of the fu­ture. And of course, those are only six out of around a mil­lion pupils study­ing in the UAE’s schools – it will be great to do the same story next year, and see what stars we find then.

If you don’t have kids (or work in me­dia or re­tail) you might not be aware that it’s al­ready back to school time. Schools start back up in the sec­ond week of Septem­ber, but books, bags and pen­cil cases are now be­ing bought for a fresh start (check out our pick of the prod­ucts on page 38).

But as Shreeja Ravin­dranathan points out in her piece about top-achiev­ing UAE stu­dents, in­spi­ra­tion is some­thing we could all add to our must-have list. Hope­fully we’ve ticked that one off for you today. While you’re read­ing about our lo­cal stars in awe, keep in mind the mil­lions of chil­dren that could also be astro­nauts or doc­tors – but don’t have ac­cess to ed­u­ca­tion. It’s one of the world’s ma­jor con­cerns, and fix­ing it has an im­pact beyond one in­di­vid­ual child. Ju­mana Abu-Han­noud, of SOS Chil­dren’s Vil­lages In­ter­na­tional, shares the de­tails in a piece for us on page 24.

Pack­ing your back­pack for travel? This year, the end of sum­mer for many means an Eid get­away. Just like we did last Eid, we’ve done the leg­work for you, rustling up over 30 pack­age deals – see page 64 that makes travel a lot eas­ier – great news on an­other hot Fri­day.

Natalie Long Editor

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