Dr. Malak, sharing views on Energy and Education issues
Dr. Malak – MIT's first female Saudi fellow – is currently the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research at Effat University in Jeddah. A supply chain modelling and optimization expert, she attended the Total Energy & Education Seminar, which welcomed more than 50 academics representing 52 universities in 24 countries. Dr. Malak’s expertise in water resource management, as well as her research and teaching experience, were highly appreciated by her fellow seminar participants, who brought a wealth of knowledge of energy, economics and management topics to the week-long gathering.
A win-win Total Education & Energy Seminar
The seminar was a model for open knowledge-sharing, Dr. Malak said. "It was a two-way workshop. It wasn’t Total giving us a lesson, or Total being lectured by us. We were communicating and discovering together what each side–academia and the industry–needs from the other, and what we can both do to help the energy sector and the education community in general.” Not being a specialist in the energy field, it was also a valuable learning experience for her. “One of the main outcomes of the seminar is that I am now establishing the first energy program in Saudi Arabia for women at my university.”
The duty of Awareness
Dr. Malak started to look at water issues and the global water crisis as part of her fellowship at MIT and the topic became a passion for her. "I was really surprised to know the status of water around the globe and in Saudi Arabia in particular. We are approaching the complete usage of our own resources. What makes me even more passionate about the subject is really the lack of awareness in the region and in the country here. People don’t realize the value of water, and that makes me more determined to get the message across.” she explains.
The duty of setting an example
Being MIT's first female Saudi fellow comes with a responsibility reminds us Dr. Malak, "Before Saudi women did not have the access to this kind of program in MIT, but I showed that it can happen. I tell my students to aim for the sky, try and try again. Keep yourself open to any opportunity that comes to your way. I am working on desalination; it is not popular in Saudi Arabia and among women but it did not stop me. I am passionate and I am enjoying it so, I continued. I am hoping that more women will be inspired about trying something different and being a pioneering women to contribute to different fields."
“I learned a lot at the Total Education & Energy Seminar, where Total and academics from all around the world, communicated and discovered what we can both do to help the energy sector and the education community in general.”
2013 to Present
Dean of Graduate Studies and Research at Effat University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Fellow at the Center for Clean Water and Clean Energy at MIT and KFUPM.