Canadian University Dubai hosts visit from the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

Honourable Dr. Andrew Furey discusses the shared vision and values of  the university and his home province 

The Honourable Dr. Andrew Furey, Premier of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, has met with students, faculty, and staff during a recent campus visit to Canadian University Dubai (CUD). Premier Furey discussed the professional and lifestyle opportunities in Canada’s youngest province and reflected on the shared vision and values of Canada and the UAE in a time of accelerating innovation and green transition.

Introduced by Nora Barson from the CUD School of Management, the afternoon’s ceremonial proceedings began with the national anthem of the UAE performed by the President of the CUD Student Council, Shaima Jamal Alhai, followed by the Canadian national anthem, performed by faculty member and internationally acclaimed Canadian pianist, Sanaz Sotoudeh. Welcoming Premier Furey and his delegation to CUD, Chancellor, Mr. Buti Saeed Al Ghandi, spoke about the institution’s dedication to Canadian educational principles.

Mr. Al Ghandi remarked, “Our university’s mission is to promote Canadian perspectives in learning, research, and application, grounded in an appreciation and respect for the diverse culture and values of the UAE. Premier Furey’s visit today underscores the strong ties and mutual respect between our nations. It is a reflection of our shared dedication to education, innovation, and the development of future leaders who are prepared to make a positive impact on a global scale.”

President of the Student Council, Shaima Jamal Alhai, went on to present insights from within the student community, before the introduction of a live art performance by celebrated Canadian artist, Sylvain Tremblay. Premier Furey then took the stage to share his insights on life in Canada and the parallels between the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, the nation of Canada, and the UAE.

A medical doctor and orthopaedic surgeon by profession, who received the 2017 Red Cross Humanitarian of the Year Award, Premier Furey discussed the common vision of the UAE and Newfoundland and Labrador to diversify their economies towards a sustainable future and highlighted the province’s abundance of opportunities in healthcare, green technology, and innovation and technology more broadly. He also paid tribute to the solid friendships and partnerships shared between Canada and the UAE.

Following his address, Premier Furey went on to take part in an audience Q&A session. Discussing the unique culture and hospitality of Newfoundland and Labrador, Premier Furey explained the province’s historical differences from the rest of Canada and how it retained its distinct cultural identity. The Q&A session also explored the subjects of student entrepreneurship, economic diversification, and the shared traditions of a familial culture.

The event concluded with the unveiling of Mr. Tremblay’s live artwork, a majestic falcon, the emblem of the UAE, gracefully clutching a red maple leaf, the iconic emblem of Canada, to represent the deep-rooted connections between Canada and the UAE. The piece, which was created to symbolize the bridge of friendship and cooperation that CUD seeks to build with its Canadian guests, was presented to Premier Furey by Mr. Al Ghandi. The proceedings closed with a medley of Celine Dion songs, performed by Ms. Sotoudeh.

Premier Furey’s engagement at CUD was part of his first visit to the UAE.

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