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MS Engineering Systems Management

I am a young woman who was born and raised in Morocco, and I have developed a deep and abiding appreciation for architecture, especially Muslim and Arab, for many years, which is why I pursued and completed my undergraduate studies in this field. I was also awarded a scholarship from UNESCO to study one semester at the University of Montreal. Next, after gaining valuable professional experience in Morocco working in my field, I moved to Bahrain and worked there as a project manager. Now, I live in Abu Dhabi and I am very much hoping to enroll in your highly esteemed program.

I am especially interested in doing research in the area of sustainable development, especially sustainable transportation and supply chains, electricity generation and transmission networks. I also keenly look forward to doing research in the areas of lean manufacturing and operations, especially energy systems and sustainable construction. I hope to someday launch research projects concerning the economic costs and benefits of implementing sustainable development strategies. I have my heart set on your program and it is the only program to which I am applying since I see your program as the nucleus of activity in Masdar City and playing a major role in building the city. I hope to become part of the way that Masdar City is becoming a global hub for renewable energy and clean technology, and an international centre where companies will continue to converge, helping to make it a city where future technologies will be showcased and researched.

In addition to English and Arabic, I also speak read and write excellent French, and I trust that this will also be of great value to me in my professional future, working on internationally funded projects. I feel strongly that my professional experience has provided me with an excellent foundation for study in your program, since I have worked with UNICEF, UNDP, USAID, and UNFPA. I have also volunteered my services as an architect building sustainable schools in the rural areas of Morocco. Thus, I feel that I have a solid background in the field of architecture, along with my formation through UNESCO in landscaping and environment. I have also greatly developed my professional knowledge base and operative skills by working as a project manager in the Middle East.

During the course of the past two years, residing in Abu Dhabi, I have been closely following the “economic crisis” that has disconcerted many of the development models of the previous decade, the fall of many of our firm certitudes. I am deeply concerned with the way in which the world today is growing at such a rapid fast pace and the ongoing depletion of our natural resources, making me ever more concerned with the need for implementing sustainable development processes and the clash between economic and environmental concerns. I am very much excited by the fact that today, smarter and greener building techniques are within our reach. I want to learn more about how sustainable construction must involve the entire chain of parties engaged in construction, from the very outset of the construction project, especially the phases of programming and design, the suitability of options and the quality of their implementation. Thus, I want to appraise the total cost approach rather than simply project cost at delivery. I look forward to studying the way that this economic approach incorporates not only traditional investment factors (cost of design, piloting, and construction) but also the costs of operating expenses for maintenance and deconstruction. I want to become proficient at upstreaming energy using natural resources, designing buildings so that they produce more energy than they consume and using building materials with low embodied energy. I also want to learn more about the social and economic realities of sustainable architectural design, the full range of economic, employment and cultural factors that come into play, such as the lifestyle of a nation, the architectural identity a region, and respect for local traditions.

I won a contest launched by UNICEF that allowed me to work with them for four years as a student architect for the rehabilitation and construction of rural schools and youth centres, learning how to always respect the need to integrate schools with their immediate environment. We worked with parents and children in order to have a better understanding of the region, creating schools that were very popular with locals. In fact, our success led UNICEF to make a request to my school for my final assignment to use as a study guide for the quality construction of rural schools in southern Morocco.

 The scholarship that I received from the UNESCO Chair in Landscape and Environmental Design to study in Montreal in 2005 was also of critical importance to the development of my career aspirations. We examined market failures and "externalities" from an economic perspective, including economically efficient pollution control, methods of evaluating environmental damage, and the design of policy instruments to control environmental damage, including regulatory systems, taxes, and trading approaches. I also benefited greatly from our study of land use change, as well as macroeconomic topics such as economic growth, sustainability, and green accounting. Attending the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology represents an opportunity for me to crown all of these experiences through participation in the building of Masdar City, the first city of its kind, with the objectives of investigating the latest technologies for the protection of our environment. I will very proud to be part of a team whose objectives converge towards the same noble direction: sustainable development.

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