Palestine Polytechnic University (PPU) has witnessed quantum leaps in a short three-decade time during which it had been developed from a community college with few scattered buildings and limited programs to a full entrepreneur University with several colleges offering graduate and undergraduate programs. The University’s diversified academic programs were not only tailored responding to the community needs, but they have also been developed qualitatively to compete in national and regional dimensions. Development on the level of research and community services provided have also been witnessing major leaps in the establishment of several multi-disciplinary centers of excellences that possess quality-certified laboratories and facilities that are capable of providing professional standardized testing and consultancies to various national development sectors.
We have accomplished a lot, but the future challenges that lie ahead require us to keep developing our entrepreneur initiatives and innovative solutions. Such creativity, on the one hand, serves our community development sectors’ needs and, on the other hand, contribute in the process of knowledge generation that serves the scientific development in large. In order to face future challenges, we need to develop interim strategies that maintain our competitiveness, and to support the leadership of the University and its graduates’ competitiveness in the national and international job market.
The University and academic environments are at the heart of the future challenges that we are going to face and develop. There is no doubt that these are significant challenges given the complexity of the instable political and economic conditions. However, we had previously progressed significantly during similar situations, and we believe wholeheartedly that that we will be able to keep up our good achievements by the teamwork we always used to embark on. At the same time, we expect the noble Palestinian businesspersons to be proactive in supporting the University’s programs and activities as these are directly focused on the development of our national human capital and community.
Universities are still the beacon to the culture all over the world. In that sense, we need to focus on strengthening the University's role in the dissemination of the world’s culture and knowledge to the University community and the society in general. Therefore, we need to strengthen our ties with the international cultural and scientific institutions and open avenues of directive academic and research cooperation that mutually serve partnerships. On the national level, we are proud that our University has been in the forefront in initiating intra-academic cooperation.
Scientific research and ‘knowledge’ as its main product are at the core role of the University role. Although such efforts need considerable financial support, which is definitely short or even does not exist nationally, we managed to establish a modest research fund that activated research activities in the University campuses. At the same time, we have been pioneers in developing research partnerships with international research institutions relying on research funding frameworks. We will be enhancing this valuable avenue by participating in international research consortiums seeking assistance from various resources such as the European Horizon 2020. Our research priorities aim at enhancing the national sustainable development by responding to the needs of the economic development sectors. We may say that we were nationally and regionally pioneers in initiating cooperation models with pillar economic development sectors such as the stone and marble, the metal, the food and beverages, and the leather and shoe industries.
We look forward to the future with optimism, confidence in our abilities and ourselves. We must understand that our success is the success of our nation, and we certainly can.
Prof. Imad Khatib