The Department of Human Nutrition at the College of Health Sciences, Qatar University (QU) sent six of its female students to complete a student externship program in Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) in Oman at the College of Agricultural and Marine Sciences. The interchange is in line with the need to enhance food security awareness and experience, within the framework of the International Student Exchange Program. As part of the exchange program, QU's College of Health Sciences hosted Omani students in July 2018.

The exchange program provided an opportunity for students to learn about the different study plans in the nutrition curriculum between the two colleges. The students learned about the various fields of food science and technology, experienced work in laboratories and attended various workshops. The program also included a visit to the SQU Dairy Factory and showed the students preparations for equipment in food engineering, laboratory and seminars on food analysis and a nutritional assessment session. Students stated that the program was very insightful and helpful to increase their experience in the area of food production and food security.

Dr. Tahra El-Obeid, Head of the Nutrition Department at QU, said that the exchange program was one of the most important goals that had been developed because of its beneficial outcomes in exchanging experiences received by colleges from around the world.

The importance of food production and security was further emphasized by the students training in the SQU dairy production facility, product development, processing lines, quality control and a tour within the SQU botanical garden. Students explored a food engineering lab for the differential scanning colorimetric method, attended two workshops in the role of dietitian in both Alnahada Hospital and ROP Hospital. Additionally, they attended MSc program on the characterization of Cellulose, Hemicellulose and Lignin from Oman pits using different methods: DSC. NMR. It is a program that will build future collaboration with College of Health Sciences.

By the end of the program, they attended a remote sensing laboratory and learnt how it can be obtained during daily life. Subsequently, they visited the center of excellence in Marine Biotechnology and ending the program with a seminar on economics of internet and artificial intelligence, which presented precision medicine (genomics) and predictions on the outcome of legal proceedings. Dr. Mohammed AlRuzeiki, Professor at SQU, said, I am very pleased with the student's performance. They showed great interest in different instruments, nutritional workshops and scientific seminars. Al-Jazi Al-Qahtani, a teaching assistant of the Nutrition Department at Qatar University, who supervised the students, said that it was an invaluable practical and scientific experience, in which students learned new ways to their field of study.

Source: Qatar University