UAE, Etihad Airways to celebrate first Emirati Women's Day
The newly inaugurated day marks the 1975 foundation of the Gulf nation’s General Women’s Union and was announced by the organization’s chairwoman, Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, who said the day will highlight the achievements and critical societal role of women in the UAE.
Etihad’s program aims to raise awareness of the major role Emirati women have played in the nation’s aviation sector while demonstrating the diverse opportunities the vital airline industry presents to Emirati women.
The airline’s program featured a panel discussion with twenty employees, highlighting the diverse and unconventional role Emirati women have played in the aviation industry.
Captain Aysha Al Hamili, the UAE’s first female pilot and Permanent Representative of the UAE on the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organizations (ICAO), kicked off the event with a video keynote speech.
“I continue to be inspired by those who make a change and have an impact on our society,” Al Hamili said. “I applaud Etihad Airways, as the national airline, for its proactive support and for providing the opportunities for the professional development of Emirati women in the industry.”
Mona Walid, the airline’s vice president for talent acquisition, said the company aims to recruit equal numbers of Emirati men and women to give equal opportunity to the nation’s citizens.
“Emiratis represent 25 percent of our UAE-based workforce,” Walid said. “We currently employ 1,269 Emirati women covering various roles, representing 49 percent of … UAE nationals in our workforce. These include 46 female pilots and five engineers.”
With an audience of 130 female professionals and students, the panel discussion was intended to encourage female Emirati students to pursue careers in all areas of the sector.