Dubai, United Arab Emirates – ZainTECH, the integrated digital solutions provider of Zain Group, launched the ZainTECH Data Challenge on 28 October, in collaboration with Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) Dubai, which follows the strategic partnership signed by the two entities earlier this month at GITEX Global 2023, aimed at advancing research and development, and fostering key business collaborations aligned with the UAE's national agenda and talent development.

The ZainTECH Data Challenge was held at RIT Dubai’s Innovation Center, during which RIT students worked with ZainTECH’s Data experts to gain practical experience. The Challenge also encouraged students to think critically and creatively to address real-world data problems; learning how to formulate hypotheses, design experiments, and evaluate model performance - a crucial skill for data-driven decision-making.

Collaboration is essential in data science and as such, students were granted the opportunity to work in teams during the event, sharing knowledge, ideas, and expertise to tackle complex challenges collaboratively. Team Velox, comprised of students Patricia Denise Azarraga Ignacio, Nart Madi, and Zoya Hyat Shaikh, secured first place in the competition, followed by team Cinnabon with members Muhammed Yusuf, Omar Mohammed Nayyar, and Dawood Ahmed Jukaku in second place, and Team X, including students Daniil Mikhailov, Alisher Beisembekov, and Tairlan Kairolla, in third place. The winning teams not only celebrated their achievements but also received substantial rewards, including scholarships and coveted paid internships at ZainTECH. These prizes serve to propel their learning and pave the way for promising career trajectories. 

Commenting on the inaugural ZainTECH Data Challenge, Andrew Hanna, CEO of ZainTECH said, “Developing data centric capabilities of students is crucial to ensuring we have a talented pool of workers in these areas in the future, who can build on the progress made to date. ZainTECH is keen to position itself as a leading contributor to AI and Data Science thought leadership in the region, while also emphasizing our role in fostering talent development.”

Dr. Yousef Al Assaf, President of RIT Dubai commented, “At RIT Dubai, we believe innovation is an ongoing journey in which students need to be equipped with digital and data analytical skills. The Data Challenge was a great opportunity to showcase and foster the mindful talents who chose RIT Dubai as their platform towards the world of Data and AI.”

RIT Dubai was established in 2008 as a not-for-profit global campus of RIT New York, one of the world’s leading technology-focused universities with a 185-year history. RIT Dubai’s curriculum provides students with relevant work experience through an innovative cooperative education program.

ZainTECH boasts a solid AI and Data Science practice dedicated to helping clients solve their business challenges through the effective, secure, and responsible use of data. By transforming untapped business data into Connected Intelligence, ZainTECH empowers organizations to uncover powerful insights, optimize decision making, enhance customer experiences, boost operational efficiency, strengthen risk management, streamline compliance, and uncover new revenue streams.

More on ZainTECH

ZainTECH is a regional integrated digital solutions provider, unifying Zain Group’s ICT assets to offer a unique value proposition of comprehensive digital solutions and services under one roof. The company is positioned to drive transformation of enterprise and government customers in the MENA region by providing a center of excellence and managed solutions, across cloud, cybersecurity, big data, drones and robotics, and digital solutions.

ZainTECH leverages Zain’s global reach, unique regional footprint, and infrastructure across its operations in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Jordan, Iraq, Sudan, South Sudan, and the United Arab Emirates as well as in other key markets in the Middle East. ZainTECH forms a key pillar in the evolution of Zain’s core telecom business to maximize value and build on the company’s many strengths to selectively create and invest in growth verticals beyond standard mobile services. This ultimately serves to support Zain’s vision of becoming a leading ICT and digital lifestyle provider.

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About RIT Dubai

Entering its next stage of growth in the region, RIT Dubai is now operating from phase one of its new $136 million state-of-the-art campus development, which will provide interactive learning space set over 129,000 square meters.

RIT Dubai offers highly valued Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in business and leadership, engineering, and computing. The curriculum provides students with relevant work experience through an innovative cooperative education program that helps students stand out in today’s highly competitive job market. RIT Dubai offers American degrees, and all of RIT’s programs are UAE Ministry accredited. Students of RIT Dubai also have the unique opportunity to choose to study abroad at the main campus in New York or at one of its other global campuses.