|05 May, 2018

Saudi entrepreneur appointed to board of cyber security group

Nouf Abdullah Al-Rakan is the CEO of Educational Initiatives, an educational-development center in Riyadh.

Image used for illustrative purposes.

Image used for illustrative purposes.

REUTERS/John Adkisson

JEDDAH - Nouf Abdullah Al-Rakan has been appointed executive director of of the Saudi Arabian Federation for Cyber Security, Programming and Drones (SAFCSP), with the unanimous approval of board members impressed by her practical and administrative experience.

Saud Al-Qahtani, consultant at the Royal Court and head of the SAFCSP, announced the appointment of Al-Rakan, whose many professional roles include being CEO of an educational organization, through his Twitter account, describing her as a great addition to the federation.

On the sidelines of the MiSK Global Forum, Al-Rakan, who previously urged all women to believe in themselves, described her own academic and professional career as being “more difficult compared to nowadays.”

She said she received a first-class education and her parents did not spare any expense in her schooling, but added that it was difficult for her generation to achieve a high level of education that would pave the way for them to enter the labor market.

“When I started working, the job market had very few offerings for women,” said Al-Rakan. “It is something that I carried over as a person. When I worked as a pro-bono in the chambers of commerce, we lobbied a lot in the job market trying to create vacancies for women and change the labor law for their interests.”

She added that people cannot just wait for something to happen for them, adding: “You have to push for that change.”

Al-Rakan aims to encourage improvement and change for Saudis through good education, hard work and, most importantly, by improving self-confidence.

She says she is proud of being a businesswoman, and her role as CEO of Educational Initiatives, an educational-development center in Riyadh. She is a strong believer in a bright future for Saudi Arabia, driven by young talents in a country where women are empowered through studies and work.

The SAFCSP is a national institution, under the umbrella of the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee, which seeks to build national and professional capabilities in the fields of cybersecurity and programming, in line with established and internationally recognized practices and standards, to help the Kingdom rise through the ranks of developed countries in the domain of technology innovation.

Al-Rakan is a graduate of the George Washington University Project Management Program. She is also a Windsor Leadership Program Alumni.

She is the managing director of Alimtiaz which includes, Educational Initiatives, and Edama Projects.

She has more than 14 years’ experience in consulting, project management, communication, and light manufacturing. She began her career at age 18 in the trading and importing of leather goods, and has worked in a broad range of industries, including education, journalism, publishing, information systems, banking and telecommunications.

In 2004, she established MITSCo, an information technology company specializing in programming mobile-phone applications, and continued in the technology field by expanding to sports portal programming and creating the Universal Sports web portal.

In 2008, Alimtiaz Project Management and Consulting was established to provide consulting and business-advisory services to government organizations and local companies.

In 2010 she established Educational Initiatives to help develop educational and training programs in partnership with leading global organizations, focusing on promoting small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to support Saudi businesswomen and train them in leadership and entrepreneurial skills, as well as technical and managerial training.

She also started an extensive program with leading global institutes and agencies offering extensive on-site research and development programs in support of SMEs.

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