The tenth edition of the Emirates Environmental Group (EEG) Annual Interâ€“College Public Speaking Competition was held on 29 and 30 November 2010 at the Knowledge Village Auditorium. The Competition is popular throughout the GCC and UOWD students have been participating in the event from year 2006 onwards.
This year too the University showed its commitment to the environment by sending a team of students mentored by Dr Swapna Koshy. The UOWD team comprising Insiya Lokhandwala (Speaker), Sara Mukhtar, Milan Sindhav, Vincy Varghese and Sana Sharaf submitted a comprehensive 25 page report based on extensive research of over a 100 sources to qualify for the speaking competition. The team won the First overall runner up position as well as the second position in the category The environmental role media can play in the Gulf.
The Emirates Environmental Group is an NGO with an accredited status with several UN bodies like the UNCCD and UNEP and is headed by Mrs Habiba Al Marashi who is also a Board Member of the UNs Global Compact. The competition, which was in four categories, saw the participation of 60 universities from all over the Gulf region.
The jury consisted of avid environmentalists and acclaimed speakers from the UAE and overseas. Two of UAEs Green champions - the Green Sheikh - Sheikh Abdul Aziz Bin Ali Al Nuaimi of the ruling family of Ajman who boasts a carbon footprint three times lower than others in his position and Dr Mohammad Raouf of the Gulf Research centre were two such jury members.
A captive audience of over a 100 students, teachers and environmentalists including Dr Ayoub Kazim the Executive Director of Dubai Knowledge Village supported the presenters on both days. The competition was tough and all major universities from the UAE and the region were represented. The overall winner was Prince Sultan University Riyadh winning with 189 points. UOWD scored a close 185.
"The competition was a great learning experience and deepened our understanding of pressing environment issues and probable solutions to them. We would like to thank Dr. Koshy for her guidance and training, commented Insiya Lokhandwala speaker of the UOWD team. Insiya is an active member of the UOWD Public Speaking Club and has won several competitions for the University.