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  • Ahmed Saleh

Bentley launches global mentoring program for female leaders

The second iteration of Bentley Motors' Extraordinary Women project, a global mentoring program designed to uplift and support the next generation of female leaders, has just been launched. The curriculum is especially designed for female students interested in jobs in business, technology, engineering, and design. The program is expanding to Saudi Arabia for the first time in line with Saudi Vision 2030, with the intention of inspiring women to think about careers in STEM and the automotive sector.

Bentley Motors held a virtual launch event on March 6th with Karen Lange, Bentley's Member of the Board for Human Resources, to formally open the application process to students from the partner universities in the UK and KSA and to provide them with more details about the initiative and how to apply.

Bentley will now work with Dar Al-Hekma University to choose the students who will take part in the program. Before attending a one-week program at the Bentley headquarters in Crewe this June, successful applicants will engage in one-on-one mentoring with seasoned Bentley staff members and the extraordinary Pioneers. There, they will work with Bentley teams on real projects to put the lessons they learn from their mentoring experience to good use.

Motivating pioneers to change the world

Being the first female aerospace engineer in the GCC and the Vice President of the International Astronautical Federation, Eng. Mishaal Ashemimry said, "Entering a field where women have historically been underrepresented is no simple undertaking. As a mentor myself, I am continually reminded that breaking down barriers and dispelling preconceptions requires unflinching courage, perseverance, and self-belief. Even if the trip is difficult, the end result may be well worth it.

Noha Zagzoug says, "I'm happy to be a part of a program that matches with the Saudi Vision 2030 aim of encouraging gender diversity and strengthening women in the workforce. I'm a participant in Bentley's Extraordinary Women Program. I'm pleased to be able to encourage and support the upcoming generation of female leaders with the chance to mentor kids as part of the program. Being a part of this endeavor and helping to build a more inclusive and diverse future makes me feel honored.

"As a Saudi female entrepreneur, it is important for me to share my commercial experience in the luxury field with younger women who are seeking their own path," says Nadine Attar, CEO and Creative Director of Nadine Jewellery. As we all contribute to the improvement of this nation, I feel empowered when I can help them succeed. Being a part of Bentley's Extraordinary Women program is a luxury that allows me to share knowledge and assist Saudi women in taking the first step toward their goals. I hope my input helps them succeed and flourish.

Regionalizing the global concept

Dr. Karen Lange, a member of the board for human resources, explained:

In particular, given our ambition to attain 30% diverse management by 2025, pursuing a constructive and mutually beneficial diversity policy is a crucial component of our Beyond100 strategy. One important part of this is our unique Extraordinary Women program, which we are thrilled to be implementing in an increasing number of nations.

"At Bentley, mentoring is still a crucial instrument for development. It was satisfying for everyone involved to see the program's first year be successful and have such wonderful feedback from the young women who took part in it. In order to help talented young women advance their understanding of jobs in STEM and the automotive industry, we are eager to welcome more of them on board.

Dar Al Hekma University's acting provost, Dr. Eiman Kurdi, stated: "We are dedicated to developing the abilities and potential of young women throughout the nation. We work hard to give our students the knowledge, skills, and experiences they need to succeed in today's rapidly changing world as a pioneering institution with a vision for excellence and innovation. We are confident that this project will significantly improve the job possibilities of our students, and we are eager to collaborate with Bentley Motors to support the advancement of the next generation of remarkable women.

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