Posted on January 19, 2015

Qatar University (QU) yesterday welcomed 179 prospective students interested in joining the new College of Medicine (CMED). The event drew over 250 attendees and was an opportunity for the students and their parents to meet the dean Dr Egon Toft, faculty and staff, to learn more about the College, its program and curriculum, and to articulate their expectations and concerns.

The event followed an online marketing campaign by the College which is seeking to admit up to 50 students in the first year.  More than 400 students, including over 50 Qatari nationals, have registered their interest so far, College officials said, noting that priority in admission will be given to Qatari students, and to outstanding international students, especially long-term residents and students born in Qatar. Admission to the college will begin on February 22 and extend until July 9.

The students also met four practicing doctors from Hamad Medical Corporation, Sidra and Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) who shared their experiences and highlighted reasons for choosing medicine as a career. A presentation by CMED Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs Dr Abdullatif Al Khal gave the students an insight into the world of medicine and its contribution to a healthy society and by extension, to national development and progress. Assistant Dean for Student Affairs Ghada Al Kuwari explained admission criteria, student life and addressed students' questions related to admission and transfers.

A sideline exhibition featured information booths from QU Admissions Department, Scholarships Office, Honors Program, and Student Activities Department as well as HMC “Doctors of the Future” program that aims to attract students to the medical profession. In his remarks, Dr Toft said: “This is an historic day as it marks the first event for the first national medical college in the history of Qatar.”

Pointing to the College’s slogan “National focus. International standards”, he explained that “we are national because our priorities are based on the needs of the local society; but we are also international because we are committed to international quality standards in everything we do from curriculum design to teaching and research methods.” He told the students that while the English medium of instruction will give them access to the latest advances in the medical field, the focus on Arabic communication will enhance their ability to communicate effectively with patients. He added that the curriculum will be based on international best practice and that national traditions and culture will be embraced within the teaching and learning environment.

Qatar University engages prospective [].JPG

Dr Toft encouraged them to take advantage of the support and resources provided by the College and to commit to hard work. He also reminded them that hard work does not end at graduation. “Medicine is a fascinating but demanding career and  you will be empowered with the skills to become a lifelong learner so that you can stay at the cutting edge of medical advances”, he said. “You will be taught by the best to become the best -- the best in the sense that you will receive a medical education designed to empower you with the knowledge and the skills specific for Qatar’s needs. The future of healthcare in Qatar needs highly-qualified doctors that are locally-trained and locally-based. We hope you are up for this mission, we know we are!”

Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs Dr Abdullatif Al Khal said: “I am confident that the College of Medicine will play a significant role in helping Qatar meet its need for highly-knowledgeable, compassionate and competent medical doctors to support the health of the community. He added: “Its collaboration with Hamad Medical Corporation will be a key factor in supporting its mission. Medical students will spend a significant amount of their studentship learning clinical medicine within the hospital system. Its patient-focused approach to medical education also ensures that such exposure to the clinical environment begins early on to ensure that the theoretical and the practical aspects are well bridged.”