Dubai is a dynamic, iconic business hub in the Middle East and one of the world’s fastest growing economies. The city features ultramodern architecture, exciting construction projects and sits at the heart of trade in the region.
Westminster alumni and academics have teamed up to offer students a unique opportunity to experience the professional environment, history and culture of Dubai.
Westminster Working Cultures (WWC) is part of the Westminster Employability Award. As an optional activity, you can gain 10 points upon successful completion of participation in the WWC programme.
About the programme
Dates and duration
Friday 13 September – Friday 20 September 2019, 8 days (inclusive of travel).
Please note: you must be available for the whole period of time and your passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry to the UAE.
This trip has been generously funded by the Quintin Hogg Trust and Santander Universities. This means most of your trip costs will be funded, including flights and accommodation.
Students who are selected for the programme will be asked to make a £100 contribution towards the trip, pay for your own transport costs to and from the selected London airport, a visa if you require one and costs associated with free time (ie food and entrance fees).
Please note: to find out whether or not you require a visa to visit the UAE please visit the Embassy of the UAE in London or your home country’s webpages.
During the trip
The purpose of the trip is to enhance your employability and develop skills that will help you after graduation. You’ll visit a number of leading and diverse organisations in the UAE and have a chance to reflect on your experience. A full itinerary and list of companies you’ll visit will be provided closer to the trip. Please be prepared to research the organisations so you can make the most of your time.
Please note: students will have to do a lot of walking and use public transportation around the UAE. To ensure students make the most during their time in the UAE, the itinerary will include multiple visits and talks a day and may be quite intense.
Sessions will have an employability focus and may include:
- Seminars and workshops
- Workplace tours
- Q&A sessions with UoW alumni
You will also be joined by Professor Stephen Brookhouse, Associate Head of External Relations, College of Design, Creative and Digital Industries, who will help you exploring the city through architecture.
You will also have time to enhance your understanding and cultural knowledge of the UAE.
Please note: this list may be subject to change.
Accommodation will be in University-standard Halls of Residence or similar. Details will be confirmed prior to departure.
Please note: you will be sharing a twin room with another student of the same sex.
The visit will be led by members of the Alumni Office, and you will be joined by Professor Stephen Brookhouse, Associate Head, College of Design, Creative and Digital Industries – ER. The visit will be subject to normal University risk assessments and regulations.
Please be aware that UAE laws and customs are very different to those in the UK. You will need to be aware of your actions to ensure that they don’t offend, especially if you intend to visit religious areas. There may be serious penalties for doing something that might not be illegal in the UK. You are strongly advised to familiarise yourself with, and respect local laws and customs. You can view more on the UK Foreign Travel Advice webpage.
There will be a number of informal alumni events which you will be required to attend as representatives of the University.
"The international experience gave me a kind of reality check, understood that way, that when you spend a lot of time in school, the future on the other side of the Westminster walls seems far away and a bit unreal. Meeting people who in some way or another, have been standing in the same place as us, studying at Westminster, and who have also at this point been at the very start of their career, was comforting but most of all inspirational. It gave me a lot of energy to keep up the hard work and gave reminded me that success is possible if you believe in what you do and you go out and do it"
Stine Bang Hansen, Photography BA (Washington DC trip, September 2018)
"The WWC experience has helped me prepare for graduate employability because it literally has helped me secure a graduate job with a globally leading real estate firm, one which I have always wanted to work at… During my assessment centre and interview, I must say I felt a great sense of confidence as I was equipped with an international experience which helped me standout in front of all the other graduate candidates."
Sahib Uddin, Building Surveying BSc Honours (Mumbai trip, December 2017)
"I will put this experience on my CV under “achievements” and add the new skills I have developed… when in interview situations I will use plenty of examples as evidence that I have truly developed these skills."
Rachelle Kyriacou, Human Nutrition with Foundation BA Honours (September 2017 trip)
"In a world where companies are beginning to spread globally, I can use this international experience to show that I am willing to put myself out there to learn about different cultures… This experience will also show that I am open to learning new things, welcome challenges and willing to form partnerships to tackle global challenges."
Julian Montoya Vallejo, Biochemistry BA Honours (Hong Kong trip, September 2017)
You must be enrolled as a full-time, undergraduate University of Westminster student at the time of this trip.
Agree to the ‘Expectations of trip participants’:
- Be on time and participate in all activities and meetings
- Submit photos, videos or write a blog post about your experience
- Reflect on your experience through the Westminster Working Cultures workbook
- Be aware that things may change during your time abroad, have an open mind and be flexible!
Students are required to maintain the highest standards of behaviour while abroad on a University of Westminster programme. Students overseas remain bound by the University of Westminster’s 'Student Code of Conduct'.
How to join the programme
In order to be selected you will need to:
- Complete an online application form
- Agree to the participant expectations
- Be available to travel from 13–20 September 2019
Applications will remain open until 11:59pm on Monday 6 May 2019 and applicants will be notified either way of the outcome as soon as possible after the application period closes.
A selection panel will shortlist the participants against criteria which includes:
- Academic performance
- Quality of your response to the motivation questions for taking part in the programme
- Previous Outward Mobility experience with the University
Please note: priority may be given to students who meet one of the Widening Participation criteria listed below, however, we strongly encourage applications from students on all courses and years within the undergraduate programme:
- You are the first generation in your family to go to University
- You are a first-generation English speaker in your family
- Your family home is a housing association or council property
- You are a carer, care leaver or estranged student
- You are black, Asian or minority ethnic student
- You are registered with Disability Learning Support
Tips for writing a good application
Stand out from the crowd!
- Prepare your answers in advance of making the application, ask someone to proof read for grammar and spelling
- Use the word limit for each question to fully explain and showcase your interest in the opportunity. If you only write a sentence or two for the core motivation questions, you will probably not be selected for this opportunity.
- Clearly demonstrate your motivations with particular reference to academic, professional or personal development. We want to know why YOU want to take part in this opportunity.
The University of Westminster takes the safety of our students very seriously. This employability programme will be supported in-country by a minimum of two Westminster staff members and all students will be covered by the University of Westminster travel insurance (free of charge to students).
All students selected to participate in the programme will be required to attend the pre-departure briefing sessions which will take place in June and late August.
You can email [email protected] with any queries.
For further advice on security and visiting the United Arab Emirates, please see the Foreign Travel Advice – United Arab Emirates on the government’s website.