JAMS' Dr. Hamza Maasad: to shape future-proof academic programs
Keeping up with all technological developments and advanced maritime educational methods, the Jordan Academy for Maritime Studies JAMS looks forward to enhancing its programs and developing its fields of specialty to ensure the future of its students and graduates is in line with the requirements of an advancing maritime industry. According to Dr. Hamza Massad, Assistant President of the Academy for Training, Administrative and Financial Affairs, Director of Training and Research at JAMS, this plan helps shaping future-proof solutions that stand tall in front of challenges. During the Saudi Maritime Congress, Dr. Massad gave us a quick overview on the academy’s expansion in the Middle East and the world.
Where is the Jordan Academy for Maritime Studies positioned globally?
Since its establishment 20 years ago, JAMS has always been expanding while maintaining the quality of its educational programs. With a distinguished staff, the academy seeks to keep pace with the technological developments, specialties and leading maritime trends, and link its educational programs with the market’s requirements, latest technologies, and maritime laws. The reputation of the academy’s students is renowned within the maritime academic community, and the expansion plans are well thought out as we significantly witness the contentment of the shipping sector and maritime companies in both the Middle East region and the world.
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How do you see the Saudi maritime market? Is JAMS up to any expansion plans there?
The Saudi market is significantly looking forward to educational opportunities, and further developing its shipping and logistics specialized educational systems. We see a remarkable expansion throughout the maritime companies under the 2030 vision, and through the significant steps being taken in terms of development, growth and capacity. In the light of these paces, the Jordan Academy for Maritime Studies seeks to seize opportunities in all markets and meet the requirements locally and internationally, through cooperation, whether with its standard programs such as courses for navigation officers, marine engineers, electricians and other seafarers, or through customized programs that meet special requirements. It is worth mentioning that the cooperation between the Academy and Saudi Arabia persists, as the number of Saudi students, graduates and trainees has reached nearly 3350, including more than 2500 during the last two years, with this number being on the rise. This cooperation takes many forms at different levels, academic and governmental, as well as at the level of conferences, ports, companies and individuals.
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How was the interaction at this year’s Saudi Maritime Congress?
It is an amazingly organized event with a notable audience, gathering large companies and diverse experiences, being a good opportunity to communicate and establish relationships and partnerships that serve the shipping sector, in line with the academy’s plans to reinforce its relations with various maritime companies and service providers. It is worth noting that the Academy has signed a number of agreements and MOUs that solely reflect the interest of developing relations which would provide the Saudi and Arab maritime sector with the best skills of trained and qualified workforce.
What are the Academy’s plans in the coming period?
The Academy seeks to keep up with all the technological trends and solutions that enhance its educational programs, develop its simulators, courses materials, and autonomous ships programs. This adds up to the workshops that aim to keep lecturers updated with the latest advancements in shipping. I believe that this strategy has tremendously helped the Academy adapt during the pandemic, through our preparation and prior launching of blended and e-learning programs. This trend, which was accelerated by the pandemic, has become mandatory and essential. We had undoubtedly faced multiple challenges concerning the practical training; however, we have worked hard to overcome them through the methods of the cloud-based simulators which facilitated distance learning and training procedures.
Are there new fields of specialty to be included in the Academy’s programs?
Great steps are underway; we are currently developing materials and attaining approvals; we will certainly announce any new plans upon completion.
Robban Assafina Magazine, Issue 82, Nov./ Dec. 2022, Maritime Host, p. 87