A New Initiative Toward Harnessing Digital Transformation

The School of Engineering launches a series of professional workshops to help engineers and the broader community benefit from the latest advancements in the tech industry.

By Sara Makarem

Nicolas El Khoury led the first workshop of the Technovation series, addressing the hot topics of DevOps, cloud computing and microservices.

For sustainable growth, businesses nowadays need to continuously integrate technologies to boost their operations, such as migrating data to cloud-based platforms, optimizing software and applications, or even redesigning entire business models to adapt to the demands of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

To promote the conceptual and practical knowledge needed for digitalization and digital transformation, the School of Engineering at LAU, in collaboration with InMind Academy, held its inaugural workshop, TechNovation, at the Byblos campus on April 6, 2024.

Led by Nicolas El Khoury (BE ‘14), who is the global director of Technology at EDT & Partners, co-founder of Amazon Web Services Beirut and an LAU lecturer, the first workshop of this year’s edition aimed to demystify modern IT practices of DevOps, cloud computing and microservices to more than 40 young professionals and technical leads.

These practices help to ensure the smooth and successful operation of tech-based businesses and enable the development, delivery and maintenance of their applications in a modular, adaptable, and easily scalable manner.

Having an alumnus lead the workshop series “is a testament to the quality education and dedication of the university and the School of Engineering in promoting student and alumni talents,” noted Dr. Michel Khoury, dean of the School of Engineering.

The remaining five training workshops will be conducted over the next seven months. They will tackle other pertinent topics like software development, robotics design, deep learning and computer vision, featuring industry specialists and academicians as keynote speakers.

The series is the result of continuous collaboration between industry and community partners, including BMW Group, Idealworks, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Lebanon Section and the Association of Computing (ACM) SIGAPP French Chapter.

“It’s a win-win strategy,” said Dr. Joe Tekli, associate professor in computer engineering and assistant provost for strategic planning and academic initiatives and partnerships at LAU, who drove this initiative.

This partnered venture, he added, empowers young professionals to stay at the forefront of technological developments, enhancing their businesses’ overall productivity and competitiveness while enabling the university to build strong relationships with the industry and secure the best professional opportunities for its students.

Notably, a percentage of the workshops’ proceeds will go to funding the Student Training Internship Program (STIP), an inter-university collaboration launched in 2023 with InMind Academy that allows excelling students to benefit from applied training and talent-mining opportunities.

LAU has spearheaded STIP since 2018, facilitating internships for more than 125 engineering students at BMW Group and its affiliates, including Idealworks, Palantir Technologies and InMind.

“This initiative is an integral part of our school’s commitment to societal engagement,” said Dr. Khoury. “It aligns perfectly with our strategy to empower the community with the latest advancements in technology, contributing to their professional growth and the overall advancement of society.”